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Trump Administration to End Legal Protection for Over One Million Immigrants in U.S.

In a closed-door meeting Wednesday, Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly announced to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus that DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), a program that grants work permits to more than 800,000 undocumented immigrants, will likely soon be dismantled.

The announcement comes two weeks after officials in 11 states wrote to Attorney General Jefferson Sessions threatening to sue the federal government if it did not rescind Obama’s DACA program by Sept. 5.

DACA was implemented in mid-2012 under the Obama Administration to boost Obama’s credentials among Latino voters. The move was not opposed by immigration officials, who saw the move as an opportunity to accumulate lists of youth living in the US without documentation. As the WSWS wrote in 2012:

The implementation of the DACA program came three months before the presidential election, implementation of the initiative—providing limited rights to a narrow section of immigrants—is at best a cynical gesture in an effort to court Latino voters. At worst, the information gathered in the application process could be used against immigrants and their families. The Obama administration has pursued an aggressive anti-immigrant agenda, rounding up immigrants in wide-scale sweeps and deporting them in record number, and this policy will not end with DACA.

The worst case scenario is now coming to fruition. All of the personal information needed to carry out deportations of these children and their families is now conveniently in the hands of the Department of Homeland Security. The thousands of children who lined up for the chance at the limited rights offered by the program gave their names, addresses, countries of origin, their personal histories, and signed a document admitting to being in the country illegally. The cost of this program was paid for by the immigrants themselves at $465 dollars apiece.

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