Little India

Dreamers Hold Protest Marches For Extension Of DACA Across U.S.

Little India — March 6, 2018

By Little India Desk

As the deadline that Trump administration had set for ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program passed on March 5, Dreamers marched across the U.S. states to call for an extension of the Obama-era policy. "Dreamers" is a term used for immigrants who came into the country illegally as children.

Hundreds of protesters from Florida, Arizona and California held sit-ins and demonstrations near offices of lawmakers such as the House Speaker Paul Ryan, in Capitol Hill, Washington D.C on March 5, according to ABC News. The U.S. Capitol Police made 87 arrests, 68 outside and 19 inside the Capitol, for "crowding, obstructing, or incommoding" and "resisting arrest."

Dallas, which has the United States' third highest concentration of DACA recipients, saw rallies with support of Roman Catholic churches. Eleven thousand parishioners signed cards urging the passage of legislation, which will give Dreamers a permanent legal status, Dallas News reported. Demonstrations were taken out on March 3 to the Chattanooga City Hall in Tennessee and from schools in Wisconsin as well.

Similar to the demonstration in Chicago, about 200 protesters marched to U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency in New Jersey, chanting slogans such as "no paper, no fear!," and "shame, shame!," NJ.com reported. The protest in New Jersey was attended by Rutger-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor, who invoked the traditional Latin motto of the United States: "E pluribus unum — out of many, one."

The protest, organized by more than 30 local groups, such as RU Dreamers, New Labor, the League of Women Voters of New Jersey, NAACP- New Brunswick Area Branch, Women's March on New Jersey and New Jersey Citizen Action, involved the Dreamers as well their supporters marching toward the federal building.

The protesters, who were escorted by Newark police escort, drew cheers and honking horns of support as they walked through the streets of Newark to ICE offices. While the chants drew some Department of Homeland Security police officers outside the building, the protest remained peaceful. This was one of the six scheduled marches around New Jersey.

March 5 was also the deadline for the Congress to put an alternative plan in place of DACA. However, with two federal courts — in San Francisco and in New York — blocking the move, and the Supreme Court's refusal to intervene in the matter despite the Trump administration's plea, the program has been accepting renewal applications from nearly 800,000 DACA recipients. DACA ensures that children brought to the country as illegal immigrants can go to work, school, and colleges without fear of deportation.

The court intervention has delayed the deadline to end the program as the courts want all litigation against the quashing of the program heard. It also came as a relief for the U.S Congress, who is at an impasse over the issue. Meanwhile, U.S. President Donald Trump made his feelings on the matter known, as is often, on Twitter.

It's March 5th and the Democrats are nowhere to be found on DACA. Gave them 6 months, they just don't care. Where are they? We are ready to make a deal!
-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 5, 2018

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