Supreme Court Upholds DACA

NC State graduate at graduation

The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked the Trump administration’s plan to dismantle the Obama-era immigration policy known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

The DACA program was established by President Barack Obama in 2012. The program benefits those who came into the United States as children and do not have citizenship or legal residency status. DACA recipients are eligible for work authorization, educational benefits and shielded from deportation. Protection provided by DACA lasts for two years and is renewable.

The opinion was written by Chief Justice John Roberts and joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. Though the 5-4 vote will protect 700,000 immigrants from deportation, the ruling did not actually address the decision to end the policy, but rather how the administration went about trying to end it.

“We do not decide whether DACA or its rescission are sound policies,” Roberts said. “The wisdom of those decisions is none of our concern. Here we address only whether the Administration complied with the procedural requirements in the law that insist on a reasoned explanation for its action.”

Theoretically, the Trump administration could attempt once more to dismantle DACA while following procedural requirements.

Following the Supreme Court ruling, President Trump tweeted,These horrible & politically charged decisions coming out of the Supreme Court are shotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives. We need more Justices or we will lose our 2nd. Amendment & everything else.”

That same day, in response to the ruling, former President Obama tweeted “Eight years ago this week, we protected young people who were raised as part of our American family from deportation. Today, I’m happy for them, their families and all of us.”

In late 2016, NC State addressed concerns about the possible end of DACA in a memo to all students, faculty and staff. In 2019, the Office for Institutional Equity and Diversity provided guidance for undocumented students in the face of actions by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that threatened their safety after the status of DACA became uncertain beginning in 2017.

Jenna Nabors (she/her) is a fourth-year student majoring in communication and international studies and a Park Scholar. Share your thoughts about this article on Twitter at @NCStateOIED.