Press Release

AFT Leaders React to Appeals Court Ruling on DACA

For Release:


Alexis Lopez

WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and Executive Vice President Evelyn DeJesus issued the following statements in response to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that declares the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program unlawful but allowing it to remain in place for existing DACA recipients for now:

Weingarten said:

“After all these years, Dreamers are still under attack. These young adults have been raised in the United States, and they’ve become our teachers, nurses and essential workers. They kept this country running during a global pandemic, and continue to help protect our communities, contribute to our economy, and create the vibrant and diverse tapestry of our culture. The court’s decision declaring the DACA program unlawful jeopardizes the safety and security of DACA recipients and their families. Congress must find a legislative solution with a pathway to citizenship immediately because this country is their home. To our DACA family: We see you, we value you and we will continue to fight for you.”

DeJesus said:

“We must end the unconscionable fear that has haunted the over 600,000 DACA beneficiaries who were raised and educated in this country and who know no other country as their home. The 5th Circuit decision will not hinder our support for immigration reform―in fact, we must come together with faith leaders, organizations, our union siblings and elected officials to find a legislative answer to fix this broken system. Dreamers are Americans, and they are here to stay.”

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.