New Jersey is the next state to include itself in challenging the Trump administration’s plan to rescind the DACA program. DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, allows children who were brought into the United States undocumented to remain in the United States. Trump’s plan to end DACA threatens the status of approximately 800,000 young undocumented immigrants, often called “Dreamers”.
New Jersey is now one of 17 states, plus the District of Columbia, that has taken a stance against Trump’s plan. The New Jersey Attorney General, Gurbir S. Grewal, filed a federal court brief that said ending DACA would, logically, cause trouble for the state financially, but he added ethical statements as well, saying that Trump’s decision is “unnecessary” and “unjust.”
According to the brief, the end of DACA would “irreparably harm New Jersey’s public colleges and universities by depriving them of the incredible diversity that DACA students bring to their institutions, of hundreds of thousands of dollars in tuition revenue, and of valuable employees, whom the institutions have spent money recruiting, training and retaining.”
The brief cited a statistic from the Migration Police Institute that finds that 53,000 DACA-eligible people reside in New Jersey. The brief claims, “DACA-eligible residents earned an estimated $811.9 million in New Jersey in 2015, and paid an estimated $66 million in state and local taxes in 2016.”
Grewal told the public in a press release, “DACA grantees are part of the fabric of our state…They are wage earners and taxpayers. They have careers, own homes and cars, and have U.S. citizen children, siblings and spouses.”
Donald Trump’s deadline for the DACA program had been March 5, 2018, but that was put on hold after the Supreme Court of the United States decided not to hear a DACA program case in February of 2018.
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