In a memorandum released late Thursday night, the administration stated it would continue DACA, an Obama-era program that protects undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S.as children. That initiative sought to temporarily remove the threat of deportation for more than 4 million immigrant parents of children who are USA citizens or lawful permanent residents. She said Thursday's decision carried a muted impact because DAPA never went into effect in the first place.
"DAPA and DACA are two different programs", a spokeswoman for DHS said. The group's executive director, Lucas Codognolla, said the announcement that DACA "is safe for now" is "a testament to the organizing and power of the immigrant youth movement".
The Trump administration's decision to continue an Obama-era program protecting undocumented youth from deportation was welcomed by activists in CT, but they cautioned against interpreting it as a major shift in immigration policy.
The program protects the immigrants, known as "Dreamers", from being deported, and helps them obtain work permits so they can be legally employed. But in a follow-up statement on Friday, the White House said that "no final determination" had been made about the future of the program. The program served to protect undocumented immigrants living in the United States and whose children are American citizens.
Participants were to have been kept safe from deportation and provided with renewable work permits, but the program was blocked by a federal judge in Texas after 26 states sued. While immigration advocates and Trump supporters debate the merits of the DACA decision, the US immigrant community will still be watching its back.
"With regard to DACA, the President has remarked on the need to handle the issue with compassion and with heart", said Burke, the Homeland Security spokeswoman, adding that only Congress could provide a long-term solution regarding those who arrived illegally, as minors.
That program, like the one for young immigrants, was created with a policy memo, not by legislation. Trump laid the groundwork to ramp up his deportation force early in his presidency, leading to many immigration raids resulted in large numbers of deportations, many of nonviolent offenders.
Some groups, which have condemned amnesty for immigrants who came to the US illegally, called on Trump to carry through with his promises to end DACA. In an Associated Press interview in April, Trump said his administration is "not after the dreamers, we are after the criminals" and said, "The dreamers should rest easy".
Individuals who fall under the "Dreamer" designation, as defined by President Obama, are children of undocumented immigrants who came to the US not by their own choosing.