AFSC Iowa and Iowa Dream Coalition will be hosting a press conference sharing Iowan’s reactions to the SCOTUS DACA decision at 12:00 pm today, Thursday, June 18. Register in advance for this meeting. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
For Immediate Release
Cecilia Martinez, Iowa Dream Coalition email@example.com 641-751-6867
Erica Johnson, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) Iowa 773-875-1493, firstname.lastname@example.org
Supreme Court Upholds DACA
Quaker org says congressional action still needed
DES MOINES, IA (June 18, 2020) Today, the U.S. Supreme Court announced a 5-4 ruling that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is lawful and the Trump administration did not provide adequate justification to rescind it. DACA is a program that has provided temporary deportation relief to almost 800,000 people who came to the U.S. as children, around 3,100 individuals in Iowa. The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) Iowa - an advocacy and legal services organization that has worked for immigrant and refugee rights in Iowa for 25 years – applauded the decision.
“This decision is a victory for young people, their families, and our communities,” said Erica Johnson, director of AFSC Iowa. “During a time of pandemic and a growing movement to end violence from law enforcement against Black and Brown people, we need these protections more than ever. We know that the demands from Black and Brown people in this moment have played a key role in the victory that we celebrate and we stand in solidarity with everyone who worked to make this happen. Unfortunately, the administration still has the authority to rescind the program again. We are calling on the administration to halt any enforcement activities against DACA recipients and cease all attacks on the DACA program.”
Since the DACA program was announced by executive order in 2012, AFSC has been involved in helping people sign up for the program, providing know-your-rights information, protesting and advocating for systemic change, and mobilizing to support legislation creating a roadmap to citizenship for all.
DACA recipients are now urging Congress to act – and not just to protect DACA recipients. "We’re taking this as a win, but that doesn’t mean we can stop fighting for immigrants’ rights for all,” said Cecilia Martinez, leader with the Iowa Dream Coalition and AFSC Iowa. "There are still members of our communities that don’t qualify for DACA and need protection. We need solutions that include everyone."
Despite the victory, AFSC and organizations across the country say this movement for immigrant rights and racial justice is far from over. “Immigration is not just a Latinx issue. We stand with leaders in the movement for racial justice. While this is an unexpected and welcome decision from SCOTUS, we also know that we have more work to do. Our parents and all members of our communities also deserve protections,” said Kenia Calderon, an immigrant rights organizer with the Iowa Dream Coalition and AFSC Iowa, who is also a DACA recipient. “We all deserve to know that we can feel safe and secure in our communities. Congress must stop funding agencies like ICE and CBP that harm our communities and pass legislation to provide a roadmap to citizenship for all 11 million undocumented people living and working in the United States.”
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The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker organization that promotes lasting peace with justice, as a practical expression of faith in action. Drawing on continuing spiritual insights and working with people of many backgrounds, we nurture the seeds of change and respect for human life that transform social systems.