March 27, 2020
Media Contact: Janine Walsh
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Franciscans Deeply Concerned over Supreme Court DACA Decision Amidst Pandemic
Washington, D.C. – Amidst the current coronavirus and COVID-19 pandemic, the Franciscan Action Network, as part of larger immigration advocacy coalitions, is urging the Supreme Court to delay in returning a ruling on the case of the termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
The DACA cases now before the Supreme Court involve the futures of 700,000 people and their families, including 256,000 U.S. citizen children. If the termination of DACA is upheld, and those 700,000 people lose their jobs, then they and their families will be left without access to necessary health screening and coverage during this pandemic, undermining public health. The Supreme Court has a responsibility to consider the new circumstances before returning any decision.
“Against the background of the unprecedented health crisis in which we find ourselves, we followers of the healing Jesus and Francis of Assisi, believe that any decision made by the Supreme Court concerning DACA would be premature. There are so many new considerations that must be made in light of the public health and the consequences of DACA termination have definitely shifted.” said Sr. Marie Lucey, FAN’s Associate Director.
DACA recipients are doctors, nurses, grocery store workers, child care providers, cleaners, business owners, restaurant workers and other first responders. Pending DACA renewal requests are affected by the mandated closure of USCIS offices. There are simply too many factors in this decision that would not receive proper analysis given the “new normal” the pandemic has created, if a ruling were to be made now.
We urge the Supreme Court to showcase their humanity and delay making any decision on DACA until the crisis is over.