Dozens of protesters supporting Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) flocked to the streets of New Orleans on Wednesday as the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held a hearing on the legality of the program.
Enacted in 2012 via an executive order by former President Barack Obama, the DACA program has shielded undocumented children who entered the United States before June 15, 2007, from deportation and are provided them work permits.
DACA supporters from Houston traveled to New Orleans by bus to spend the morning urging the court to let dreamers stay in the United States. Protestors at the federal courthouse carried signs in a variety of languages while chanting and marching in the streets to call for permanent protection for all immigrants.
DACA recipient Jung Woo Kim, co-director with the National Korean American Service and Education Consortium (NAKASEC) and intervenor-defendant in the case, said: “I am sick and tired of their cowardly excuses. Every single day the Biden administration and Congress fail to act is another day our community members have to live in fear. We demand nothing short of a pathway to citizenship for all 11 million undocumented immigrants, including those with histories of incarceration.”
The uncertainty resulting from the previous administration has caused many to fear the end of the program. For the majority of the Dreamers, the U.S. is the only country they have ever known.
“They live here, they work here, they own businesses here, they’re medical professionals, they’re employees, they’re family members, they’re parents,” a DACA protester was quoted as saying.