STATEMENT: Equality Florida Responds to Trump’s Plan to End DACA
Equality Florida Responds to Trump’s Plan to End DACA
Decision will threaten the safety of LGBTQ DACA recipients in Florida
ORLANDO, FL — President Donald Trump has made the cruel decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protects undocumented immigrants who arrived in America as children.
The decision upends the lives of an estimated 800,000 young people, including over 75,000 LGBTQ people, who are currently protected from deportation and have authorization to work in the US under DACA. Over 11% of DACA recipients who responded to a survey on DACA’s impact on their lives identified as LGBTQ. DACA recipients saw an average increase in hourly wages of over 40%, 46% are in school, and over 90% were able to obtain a driver’s license or state ID.
Equality Florida’s Senior Policy Director, Hannah Willard, provided the following statement:
"President Trump’s decision to end DACA without offering a permanent solution for DREAMers is both counterproductive and cruel. Many DACA recipients own homes, run businesses, attend college, and let's be clear: ALL of them pay taxes.
In Florida, approximately 4,000 DACA eligible undocumented youth identify as LGBTQ. Subjecting this vulnerable population to deportation threatens their safety. LGBTQ immigrants disproportionately experience violence and sexual abuse while in detainment facilities and often face anti-LGBTQ persecution in their native countries. The Orlando community faced a harsh reminder of the particular fears and challenges experienced by undocumented queer folks in the wake of the Pulse massacre, as undocumented survivors delayed seeking help for fear of deportation and special arrangements had to be made for the undocumented family members of victims’ to be able to memorialize loved ones who were taken from them.
This administration has relentlessly attacked community after community and this latest assault will have massive consequences for our neighbors, our coworkers, our friends, and our families. We add our voices to the chorus of advocates calling on Congress to pass the bipartisan Dream Act of 2017 to permanently protect the young people who grew up here, who know no other country but America, from being deported. We stand with the DREAMers whose futures and even safety are now at risk because of Trump’s reckless and divisive decision to end DACA. Equality Florida remains committed to fighting for the fair and equal treatment of LGBTQ people regardless of their national origin or immigration status, and to standing in solidarity with all marginalized communities.”