Statement of NOW President Toni Van Pelt:
Donald Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will decimate protections for immigrant youth–and sends a message to immigrant women, children, and families that their safety is in jeopardy.
Trump announced Tuesday that the DACA program would formally cease six-months from now, and called on Congress to replace the policy before the March 5, 2018 deadline. His order will wipe out deportation protections and work permits for more than 800,000 young immigrants.
An end to DACA would mean that immigrant youth will be marginalized even further. Without access to work permits, their economic security will be threatened. Without safety from deportation, families will be torn apart.
This move stokes the culture of fear that Trump feeds every day with his racist, xenophobic rhetoric. And it will have real consequences–consequences that go beyond the immediate effects of ending DACA, and harm women. How many young domestic violence victims will be silenced for fear of deportation? What workplace discrimination will young women endure if they are working off the books? How many sexual assaults will occur without consequences for the perpetrator?
Trump is a bully, and he’s picking on young people. But this is not a schoolyard, and the potential for danger is very real.
No human being is illegal, and the National Organization for Women fiercely condemns the end of DACA. We will never stop demanding safety for immigrant women and families; today is no exception.
M.E. Ficarra, firstname.lastname@example.org, 951-547-1241