September 5, 2017
Media Contact: Janine Walsh
Franciscans Deeply Disturbed Over President’s Announcement of DACA Termination
Now it is up to Speaker Ryan to bring forth the reintroduced bipartisan DREAM Act to a vote
Washington, D.C.—The Franciscan Action Network (FAN) is deeply disturbed by the President’s announcement today that he will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. A vast majority of Americans, both Republicans and Democrats, support DACA, including the US Bishops Conference. By rescinding it, President Trump is betraying the values and teachings of the Scriptures on which he placed his hand while taking his oath of office, “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me.”
Like Pilate, President Trump has tried to wash his hands of responsibility when he could have and should have kept DACA in place. God commands his people to care for immigrants and treat them "no differently than the natives born among you" (Lv 19:34).
“While we’re not surprised by his decision, the President greatly disappointed all of us today,” said Franciscan Action Network Executive Director Patrick Carolan. “We deeply believe that our actions toward our immigrant brothers and sisters reflect our faith. President Trump, a professed Christian, betrays Christianity’s foundational values of hospitality and the common good as we are taught to welcome the stranger. We are determined to keep moving forward, even without Presidential leadership and we turn to our Congressional leadership to work for the common good by passing legislation which allows for a smooth pathway to citizenship, such as the DREAM act of 2017.”
The DACA executive order was never meant to be a permanent solution. We strongly disagree with it being terminated because this action will leave 800,000 young people at risk of deportation, most of whom were brought to this country as small children. Many of these young people have only known of life in the United States, they are educated here and are employed and doing service for others and their communities. It is morally irresponsible to disrupt their lives and the lives of their families without a plan for permanent legislation. With a six month delay in implementation, the Franciscan Action Network is committed to work tirelessly urging Congress to pass the DREAM Act of 2017. We will continue to stand in solidarity with all DACA recipients as they have become truly interwoven within the fabric of our American society.