Heard on All Things Considered

SCOTUS Rules DACA Program Will Continue In 5-4 Decision

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Image credit: Jake Neher/WDET

The Obama-era program allows for certain undocumented immigrants brought into the country as children to live and work legally.

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The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a 5-4 decision that the Trump administration cannot end a program that allows certain undocumented immigrants to temporarily live and work. Chief Justice John Roberts authored the opinion.

I think it’s a blessing that they are still continuing for everybody to have a second chance.” — Saidou Ba, resident

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) began in 2012 under the Obama-era Department of Homeland Security. In 2017, the Trump administration attempted to end the program, but was met with legal challenges from proponents who claimed that DACA recipients due process rights were being violated

NPR’s Nina Totenberg reports that Justice “Roberts and the court’s four liberal justices said the Department of Homeland Security’s decision to rescind DACA was arbitrary and capricious under the Administrative Procedure Act. The muddled state of play likely prevents the administration from enacting any plans to begin deportations immediately, but there is little doubt that should President Trump be reelected, the second term president almost certainly would seek to end the program.”

DACA youth “are people who deserve our respect. They are not political toys,” said Mary Engelman, Interim Director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. “We must now find a solution that provides these young people with the security and certainty they deserve.”

It’s a Blessing”

Organizers with  One Michigan gather to celebrate today’s DACA ruling, call for additional immigration reformEli Newman / WDET
Eli Newman / WDET

Organizers with One Michigan gather to celebrate today’s DACA ruling, call for additional immigration reform

In Michigan, 6,400 people were able to avoid deportation due to DACA.  

24-year-old Saidou Ba has been in the program for six years. He says the ruling will allow him to continue to work legally in real estate and as a medical biller. 

DACA recipients are “people who are here because their parents brought them here and have contributed so much to the community.” — State Sen. Stephanie Chang

A lot of people in this country haven’t been able to work due to their DACA card being expired,” Ba says in response to the news. ”I think it’s a blessing that they are still continuing for everybody to have a second chance.”

Ba grew up in Senegal and joined his parents in the United States when he was 7, after his dad got a job at General Motors. He currently lives in Southfield.

State Senator Stephanie Chang’s district includes Southwest Detroit, which has a high Latinx population. She says this decision by the Supreme Court lifts up the entire community… 

There are so many people in my district who have benefitted from DACA and they are teachers, they’re nurses, they’re first responders – they’re people who are here because their parents brought them here and have contributed so much to the community,” Chang says. 

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Laura Herberg, Community Reporter

Laura Herberg is a Community Reporter for 101.9 WDET, telling the stories about people inhabiting the Detroit region and the issues that affect us here. She has reported since 2010 without owning a car.

Follow @HerbergRadio

Russ McNamara, Host, All Things Considered

Russ McNamara is the host of All Things Considered for 101.9 WDET, presenting local news to the station’s loyal listeners. While working as an audio engineer for ABC Sports, he was sprayed with champagne as the Detroit Pistons celebrated their championship in 2004.

russmcnamara@wdet.org

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