Between Deals and Decisions, SAALT Reaffirms the Need for Real, Clean Solutions on Immigration

Jan­u­ary 22, 2019

The Supreme Court’s deci­sion today to omit hear­ing the Deferred Action for Child­hood Arrivals (DACA) case is wel­come news, as it keeps the pro­gram alive and allows cur­rent DACA recip­i­ents to con­tin­ue sub­mit­ting renew­al appli­ca­tions. While this is encour­ag­ing, the work ahead remains clear – we need a clean DREAM Act and per­ma­nent leg­isla­tive solu­tions that do not include harm­ful pro­vi­sions, as pro­posed by the Trump Admin­is­tra­tion last week­end.

The Administration’s immi­gra­tion “deal” from this week­end is no deal at all – it’s a sham. The Admin­is­tra­tion is claim­ing to rein­state two pro­grams – DACA and Tem­po­rary Pro­tect­ed Sta­tus (TPS) — that the Admin­is­tra­tion itself made a deci­sion to evis­cer­ate last year. These so-called pro­tec­tions to TPS and DACA hold­ers are half baked at best and do lit­tle to actu­al­ly pro­tect com­mu­ni­ties. The “deal” leg­is­la­tion that the Sen­ate will like­ly intro­duce this week excludes entire com­mu­ni­ties. Any­one with TPS sta­tus from Nepal, Guinea, Sier­ra Leone, Sudan, South Sudan, Yemen, Soma­lia and Syr­ia would not be pro­tect­ed.  The bill only cov­ers a frac­tion of all DREAM­ers and does not pro­vide per­ma­nent pro­tec­tion from depor­ta­tion. Most alarm­ing­ly, it includes a $5.7 bil­lion dol­lar bor­der wall and more bloat­ed increas­es to deten­tion beds and bor­der patrol agents.

“This ‘deal’ offers no con­ces­sions, no solu­tions, and will fur­ther under­mine the rule of law. It will inten­si­fy mil­i­ta­riza­tion on the bor­der and expand deten­tion, while con­tin­u­ing to hurt refugees and asy­lum seek­ers, DACA recip­i­ents, and TPS hold­ers. There are at least 450,000 undoc­u­ment­ed peo­ple from India alone, at least 25,000 Indi­an and Pak­istani DACA recip­i­ents, and near­ly 15,000 thou­sand Nepalis with TPS sta­tus who will be direct­ly impact­ed by this leg­is­la­tion,” said Suman Raghu­nathan, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of South Asian Amer­i­cans Lead­ing Togeth­er (SAALT).

South Asians, along with all immi­grant com­mu­ni­ties, deserve a real immi­gra­tion over­haul that serves every­one. Once this sham bill is intro­duced, we will sup­port our com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers and part­ners to voice our oppo­si­tion.

CONTACT: Sophia Qureshi