Washington, D.C. – Bread for the World today criticized President Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and urges Congress to permanently protect the 800,000 young people who are now under threat of deportation.
“The Bible is clear and specific about our obligation to care for immigrants. Ending the DACA program puts hundreds of thousands of young people into limbo; it is now up to Congress to take immediate steps to protect them,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World. “Lawmakers can do this by passing legislation that would grant them legal status and put them on a path to citizenship, such as the bipartisan Dream Act.”
DACA recipients are undocumented young people who were brought to the United States as children. Everyone in the program has passed an extensive background check, paid a fee, and is either a student, serves in the military, or has a job. The Dream Act of 2017 would grant them permanent legal status and put them, and other “Dreamers,” on the path to citizenship.
Bread for the World’s research over the past ten years has taught us that we must address undocumented immigration on both sides of the border. Many undocumented immigrants to the U.S. are being “pushed” by widespread hunger and violence in their home countries. Undocumented immigrants are nearly twice as likely as the general U.S. population to experience food insecurity.
“Many of these young people are from households struggling with hunger and poverty, and often support their families,” Beckmann said. “They are clearly making a positive contribution to the U.S. economy.”
In ending DACA, the administration delayed enforcement of its decision for six months to give Congress time to find a legislative solution.
Bread’s work on immigration reform is rooted in our Christian faith, and our commitment to ending hunger and poverty.