On Tuesday, Jan. 9, an injunction was issued by a California federal judge ordering that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which provided protection from deportation and work permits to individuals who entered the country illegally as children, continue accepting applications.
The injunction temporarily blocks the Trump administration from rescinding the program that President Donald Trump said was unconstitutional and an overreach of executive power when created in 2012 by then-President Barack Obama.
U.S. District Judge William Alsup of San Francisco wrote that the administration needs to “maintain the DACA program on a nationwide basis” and allow DACA enrollees to renew their DACA status with some exceptions.
However, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services website is not currently accepting application as of the day this article went to print.
According to a USCIS spokesperson, information on accepting renewal applications as a result of the injunction will be provided when available.
Dulce Garcia, San Diego immigration and criminal law attorney, said the injunction is a window of hope for DACA recipient who did not have the opportunity to renew.
Garcia is one of the plaintiffs named in the lawsuit and she said it is urgent that those who lost their DACA status begin gathering their documents and find ways to pay cost of the application.
The administration, however, can choose to appeal the ruling, which Trump shared his disagreement with it on social media.
“It just shows everyone how broken and unfair our Court System is when the opposing side in a case (such as DACA) always runs to the 9th Circuit and almost always wins before being reversed by higher courts,” Trump wrote in a tweet on Jan. 10.
This judicial decision comes a day after Trump held a bipartisan meeting with Congress members to address DACA, border security and immigration policies, as a result of the pressing deadline of Jan. 19 to pass a sending bill in order to avoid a government shutdown.
Democrats on Capitol Hill have been outspoken that they will vote against any government spending bill that does not include an answer for the almost 800,000 immigrants known as Dreamers.
U.S. Senator Kamala Harris , who has been outspoken of her support of Dreamers, said in the statement that although the judicial ruling provides relief it is not a lasting solution and Congress need to act immediately.
“It is clear there is support for the DREAM Act on both sides of the aisle and in both houses of Congress. It should be put to a vote without delay,” she said in the statement.
Senator Jeff Flake shared on Twitter Wednesday, Jan. 10, that a senate group was making progress on drafting a bipartisan DACA bill. The group includes three Republican senators and three Democratic senators.
However, during a press briefing on Thursday afternoon, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said no deal has been reached.
“Right now we are counting on Republicans and Democrats to come together, which we think they will, to make a deal on DACA and on border security, which is a vital part of that conversation and we insist be a part of it,” Sanders said during the briefing when asked by CNN’s Jim Acosta if Dreamers should have confidence that there will be an agreement that will protect them from deportation.
Garcia said that when she heard of the deal proposed by the six senators she was worried it would not be a good one and believes a clean Dream Act solution should be the only focus not border security or other immigration issues.
“So far what we are hearing is not good enough,” Garcia said. “Especially when they start attacking our parents, that something that we absolutely reject.”
On Sept. 5, Trump announced the end of the program but gave Congress until March 5 to come up with a solution to help Dreamers stay in the U.S.
Dreamers had until Oct 5., to submit DACA renewal requests, and only DACA recipients whose work authorization cards were set to expire between Sept. 5 and March 5 could apply.
However, thousands of Dreamers have already lost protection and their ability to work in the country legally.
Garcia, who is also a Dreamer, said many Dreamers did not have the opportunity to renew their DACA status due to the inability to pay the $495 or because their mailed applications did not arrive on time.
She said that although the injunction is temporary, it is not as limiting as to when DACA applicants can submit their renew request but nonetheless they should do so immediately.