The City of San Antonio is expected to become the first major city in the country to formally go on record supporting legal status and a 'path to citizenship' for recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals' program, which was created by President Obama by executive order in 2012, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
The program covers young people who came to the United States with their illegal immigrant parents. The 1.7 million recipients of the program are referred to as 'dreamers,' and the vast majority are living productively in the U.S. as students, workers, or professionals.
"We understand that our dreamers and our DACA recipients are fully engaged residents in the City of San Antonio," said southeast side Councilwoman Rebecca Viagran, who introduced the resolution, which is expected to be considered by the full City Council next month. "Our community members should not have to live in fear."
The resolution would support the Dream and Promise Act of 2019, which has already been approved by the U.S. House and is pending before the Senate. It would grant lawful permanent residency and a path to U.S. citizenship for DACA recipients.
The resolution was introduced the day after Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed court motions asking a federal court to throw out the DACA program and deny legal status to the 'dreamers.'
“The DACA program was a lawless exercise of executive power, and the Trump administration’s decision to rescind DACA was absolutely necessary to uphold the rule of law. By creating DACA and DAPA, the Obama administration attempted to bypass Congress and unilaterally amend our immigration laws,” Paxton said. “The President’s duty is to ensure that the law is faithfully executed, not to unilaterally re-write the law anytime the President disagrees with Congress’ decision.”
Viagran says local government must care for its citizens, and that is what this proposal intends to do.
"It may not have been their choice to come, but their parents sacrificed everything for them to migrate to the United States," she said.