At SIF we are all feeling challenged by the Trump administration’s decision last week to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Unless Congress acts, nearly 800,000 young immigrants who had been brought to the United States by their parents will be at risk for immediate deportation.
These young people are but the most recent of hundreds of years of American immigrant arrivals. Like their predecessors, they are participating in a democracy that should guarantee them freedom and hope, but are too often faced with discrimination, inequity, and injustice. It is critical at this time to put comfort aside and work tirelessly to uplift these voices which are being pushed out and ignored. It is imperative for the US to keep them here.
At the Social Innovation Forum, we are fortunate to work with organizations such as MassCOSH, African Community Education, Project Citizenship , and CEDC New Bedford, among others who are committed to creating a more Massachusetts by addressing the needs of immigrant populations. We will do all we can to support their work and raise up their voices.
Below are some concrete actions steps that we found helpful as we look for ways to defend undocumented immigrants.
- Get involved locally by volunteering with organizations in your area working on this issue and participating in action campaigns, including this weekend’s Resist Deportation! Defend DACA! action in Boston.
- Follow organizations and activists on social media to stay up-to-date on the latest and learn about ways you can help. We follow United We Dream, the largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation, on Facebook and Twitter as well as the National Immigration Law Center, an advocacy organization for low-income immigrants and their family members, on Facebook and Twitter.
- Contact your elected representatives and express your support for legislation that protects DACA recipients from deportation. You can look up your representatives’ contact info by zipcode or state on this website and here is a toolkit that can help. Here is some sample language:
- Please do everything in your power to ensure that the 800,000 people currently protected by DACA are not deported. It would be un-American, cruel and unnecessary to send these people away from the U.S. simply because they were born elsewhere and are undocumented. DACA already has provisions for removing violent or unlawful people from its protection, which only happens about .2% of the time. They are members of our community and I hope you will help them not only to stay in the U.S., but to continue down a path to citizenship if that is what they desire.