October 1: Thirty four young immigrants tried to enter the United States on Monday at an international bridge in San Antonio, Texas without documents to protest against the unjust U.S. immigration policies. Of these 30 are DREAMers.
The group dressed in graduation gowns marched across the Mexico to Laredo bridge in San Antonio chanting “Undocumented and unafraid!”
These immigrants spent grew up in U.S. cities like Phoenix and L.A. and wished to return to their homes. Most of these immigrants are in their teens or early 20s. The move was inspired by the famous “Dream 9” who crossed the border at Nogales, Arizona in late July as part of a protest against U.S. deportation policies. While in detention for two weeks, these young people organized other detainees and documented conditions. They are awaiting their turn before a judge.
The tragedy of these DREAMers is not just being brought into the US illegally as children or getting legally recognized. These thirty four left the U.S. both through deportations or voluntarily before the DACA was announced and implemented.
The recent protests especially those of 100 women getting arrested at Capitol Hill and now these 34 DREAMers is certainly building pressure over the Congress to act; however, it is unclear whether these protests will have any effect on the House to consider fixing the broken immigration system in the short run or not.
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Governor Jerry Brown is considering a bill that aims to prohibit the police to deport illegal immigrants; however, this law would violate federal law.
The bill called the Trust Act would stop police from co-operating with Immigration and Customs enforcement officers on several listed cases. However, the bill applies only for those immigrants who have been arrested for minor crimes.
The bill is stirring controversy among sheriffs and prosecutors who believe that undocumented immigrants who are drug peddlers and burglars who have been deported several times are considered to be criminals with minor crimes in this bill.
Since, the bill violates federal statutes the California District Attorneys Association too is geared up to oppose this bill. They believe the bill is nonsensical.
On the other hand, the supporters believe that the bill is aimed at protecting innocent illegal immigrants who otherwise have no legal protection coming to their aid and are booked under midemeanors. However, critics argue that there are several loopholes in the bill that can easily be exploited and would let illegal immigrant suspects roam around free in the community.
The Governor has time until Oct 13 to veto or sign this bill.
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer issued an executive order banning undocumented immigrants including those under DACA program from receiving their driver’s licenses. The move sparked outrage in the Hispanic and immigrant communities which led to filing of a lawsuit against Brewer in the Federal Court.
Brewer had issued the order in August 2012 denying driver’s licenses to the undocumented cleared for a temporary residential status under the federal government’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program. However, on Tuesday, September 17 she expanded the ban to include immigrants, who are victims of sex trafficking and domestic violence granted deferred action on humanitarian grounds.
Nearly 17,000 undocumented immigrants have received deferred action since the implementation of the program last year. Brewer announced the change in policy in pleadings filed in federal court where Brewer was accused of discrimination against undocumented individuals.
The ACLU and other civil rights groups filed a suit on behalf of the Arizona Dream Act Coalition seeking a preliminary injunction against the governor’s order on the grounds that it violated the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution as well as the 14th Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection under the law.
After a ruling against the Governor’s order, the policy was extended to all undocumented immigrants and not just DACA recipients.