The efforts of undocumented immigrants who work as health care providers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic will be considered as the Supreme Court decides the fate of the Deferred Action for Childhood Admissions (DACA) program — an Obama-era initiative that protects undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.
USA Today writes that the court agreed to consider a filing from an organization at Yale Law School and the National Immigration Law Center that argues President Trump’s decision to terminate the DACA program should be halted due to the pandemic.
A decision on the merits could still be issued today.
— National Immigration Law Center (@NILC) April 20, 2020
In a letter sent to the high court last month, Yale Law School wrote: “Health care providers on the front lines of our nation’s fight against COVID-19 rely significantly upon DACA recipients to perform essential work.” The letter notes that about 27,000 DACA recipients are health care workers, such as nurses, dentists, technicians and pharmacists, and nearly 200 are medical students.
DACA has been under fire since President Trump was elected. Multiple federal courts have since blocked the Trump administration from cutting the program.
USA Today also notes that in October, as the coronavirus spread in Asia, the Association of American Medical Colleges said the risk of a pandemic underscored the need to keep DACA recipients to foster a “robust health workforce.”
Last week, Senate Democrats urged President Trump to extend work authorizations for DACA and Temporary Protective Status (TPS) programs to “ease burdens for thousands of American families, and prevent further, unnecessary economic disruptions during this public health emergency.”
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