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Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

NCIL Condemns the Decision to End DACA

The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) condemns the Trump Administration’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Ending DACA will not only negatively impact the 800,000 DACA recipients (known as Dreamers) who were promised the opportunity to live, study, and work in the US; the loss of everything these 800,000 Dreamers contribute will be felt in our communities all over the country.

NCIL logo - National Council on Independent LivingThe DACA program provides protection from deportation to young people who came to the US as children. These are young people who came to America for the promise of a better life, who went through arduous background checks to register for the program, and who are now pursuing their education and working to provide for themselves and their families. Dreamers are contributing to this country not only through their work, but also by enriching their communities and adding to the diversity of this country.

The decision to end DACA is reflective of the Trump Administration’s allegiance to discriminatory, biased policies that only further the interests of white wealthy people. The decision sharply reinforces the Administration’s bias against immigrants and people of color, and NCIL strongly opposes this racist agenda.

While there are no statistics on how many Dreamers have disabilities, there’s no question that many Dreamers and their family members are part of the Independent Living community. Many immigrants come to the US for better opportunities as well as better medical care for disabilities and chronic conditions. Trump has made it clear that he views immigrants as a drain on society, and that closely mirrors his views on people who receive disability benefits (as illustrated by his proposal to significantly cut SSDI, SSI, and Medicaid). Immigrants with disabilities have long been at a disproportionate risk for detainment and deportation, and ending DACA only increases that risk for disabled Dreamers and their families. For disabled Dreamers and for all 800,000 Dreamers, ending DACA will upend lives, rip families apart, and damage communities across the country.

The Administration is allowing a six-month “delay” to give Congress time to work on an alternative immigration reform plan. NCIL calls on Congress to protect these 800,000 Dreamers, and to refuse to use their lives and livelihood as a bargaining chip. Bipartisan support for protecting the Dreamers has been voiced, and we urge the Independent Living community to support the Dreamers in our communities and around the country by holding our Members of Congress accountable. Our strength as a country comes from our diversity, and NCIL stands in solidarity with other marginalized communities to fight for equity.

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