Zuckerberg on DACA ending: 'This is a sad day for our country'

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday slammed the Trump administration's decision to phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration policy, calling it a "sad day for our country."

"The decision to end DACA is not just wrong. It is particularly cruel to offer young people the American Dream, encourage them to come out of the shadows and trust our government, and then punish them for it," he said in a statement on Facebook.

Zuckerberg underscored the value and positive impact DACA recipients, sometimes referred to as "Dreamers," can have on their communities. 

"The young people covered by DACA are our friends and neighbors. They contribute to our communities and to the economy. I've gotten to know some Dreamers over the past few years, and I've always been impressed by their strength and sense of purpose. They don't deserve to live in fear," he continued.

DACA is an Obama-era policy that protects from deportation almost 800,000 undocumented immigrants who were brought to the country as minors and sought work permits.

Zuckerberg urged those reading his appeal to contact their members of Congress and urge them to "pass the bipartisan Dream Act or another legislative solution that gives Dreamers a pathway to citizenship," after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Tuesday that the Trump administration will phase out the program.

"The program known as DACA that was effectuated under the Obama administration is being rescinded," Sessions said during a press briefing at the Justice Department.

The Trump administration will no longer accept new applications from people who hope to be DACA recipients after today, and the program protections provided to current recipients will end in the next six months.

Both Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike have urged Trump to amend the program, rather than doing away with it entirely.

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