BALTIMORE — World Relief is grateful for the decision of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to continue the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, announced on Thursday evening.
The DACA program, which was initiated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in 2012, has allowed roughly 800,000 young people who came to the United States as children and meet certain other requirements to be protected from the threat of deportation and to obtain employment authorization. This status, while not a path to permanent legal status, has allowed many ambitious young people to pursue further education, to work to support their families, and to contribute to their local churches and communities.
“We’re very grateful that President Trump and his administration have made this decision,” said World Relief president Scott Arbeiter. “It’s a huge relief for many young people whom we serve. It was a wise and compassionate decision, consistent with the biblical values that compel us to pursue just and compassionate treatment for immigrants and to have a particular concern for children.”
World Relief serves thousands of individuals each year, including many applicants for DACA, with affordable, authorized immigration legal services directly through its local offices and by providing training and support to a network of local churches authorized by the Department of Justice to provide immigration legal services. “As we interact with DACA applicants on a day-to-day basis, we hear the individual stories of lives transformed by this program,” notes Courtney Tudi, Director of Immigrant Legal Services for World Relief. “We’ve seen the many ways that this status has allowed people to pursue their own dreams and to contribute back to their communities and to the nation.” World Relief continues to urge those who believe they may qualify to apply for DACA or to renew DACA status to consult with an experienced immigration attorney or a Department of Justice-recognized legal services program such as those operated by World Relief.
World Relief continues to affirm the need for long-term, legislative solutions to the situation of undocumented youth and for comprehensive immigration reforms that would address the larger population of immigrants present unlawfully in the United States. “There’s still much work to be done, and we continue to urge congressional leaders to act on a bipartisan basis,” says World Relief SVP for Policy and Advocacy Jenny Yang. “But this decision from the Trump Administration is an important step and worth celebrating.”
World Relief is a global humanitarian relief and development organization that stands with the vulnerable and partners with local churches to end the cycle of suffering, transform lives and build sustainable communities. With over 70 years of experience, World Relief has offices in the United States that specialize in refugee and immigration services, and works in 20 countries worldwide through disaster response, health and child development, economic development and peacebuilding.