Due to COVID-19 USCIS offices are closing, which will delay critical DACA renewals
For Immediate Release Contact:
José Alonso Muñoz | firstname.lastname@example.org | (202) 810-0746
Sam Yu | email@example.com | 213-703-0992 (NAKASEC)
UndocuBlack Network | firstname.lastname@example.org | (240) 903-0189
Washington, DC – Last night, USCIS announced they will temporarily close offices to the public from March 18 through April 1. According to the USCIS announcement, “USCIS field offices will send notices to applicants and petitioners with scheduled appointments impacted by this closure.” This closure will delay critical DACA renewals since DACA recipients need to physically go to a USCIS office for their biometrics appointment.
United We Dream, NAKASEC, and UndocuBlack Network are calling on Trump and the Department of Homeland Security to automatically extend DACA protections that expire in 2020 and to withdraw their DACA case at the Supreme Court during a pandemic crisis that is further endangering all of our communities. What this global health crisis has made even more clear for us is that our individual safety depends on the safety of all people. We cannot allow Trump and his cruel policies that have gotten us to this place, to continue attacking the most vulnerable in our communities.
Cristina Jiménez, Executive Director & Co-Founder of United We Dream, said:
“Immigrant young people and our families are not only dealing with the life altering COVID-19 outbreak, but now DACA recipients are at risk of losing their deportation protections and their work permits. The USCIS office closure is creating even more fear and anxiety within our communities, because we’ve not only seen people lose their jobs and healthcare, but the deportation force of ICE and CBP are cruelly continuing their detentions and deportations during this global pandemic.
Trump and the Department of Homeland Security must immediately announce that they will automatically extend, for two years, all permits for DACA recipients whose protections expire before the end of 2020. We cannot allow Trump and his anti-immigrant agenda to use this global health crisis to further attack DACA recipients, their families and communities.”
Jung Woo Kim, Organizing Director for NAKASEC, said:
“During this time, many of our parents are getting laid off or their small businesses are closing and because of their immigration status, they are not eligible for unemployment insurance, emergency small business assistance, or other forms of public aid. Being able to maintain DACA status even as USCIS offices are closed is critical for our families. Asian Americans are particularly vulnerable, with growing incidents of physical and verbal attacks directly due to President Trump’s racist rhetoric. What we need is solidarity, not racism.”
Patrice Lawrence, Co-Director, UndocuBlack Network, said:
“Black communities are disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. We are grappling with loss of income, caregiving and struggle to meet our basic needs as the pandemic takes its toll. The Trump Administration’s continuous, senseless, cruel and thoughtless attack on DACA recipients will only add to the devastation as our DACA recipients face impending detention, deportation and loss of work permits. We therefore demand that USCIS immediately renew all DACA renewals and the Administration must withdraw the SCOTUS case on DACA.
The United States is home to over 700,000 DACA recipients and during this global crisis we deserve the decency of having what we need to provide for our families. We need to be able to keep our loved ones safe and healthy without this Administration playing politics with our lives. COVID-19 does not discriminate, it is therefore imperative, now more than ever, that every single one of us focus our energy on keeping each other healthy and protecting the vulnerable, instead of tearing lives apart.”
United We Dream is the largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation, a powerful network made up of over 400,000 members and 48 affiliate organizations across 26 states. UWD’s vision is to build a multi-racial, multi-ethnic movement of young people who organize and advocate at the local and national levels for the dignity and justice of immigrants and communities of color in the United States.