NNAAC joins immigrant advocates in voicing disapproval of anti-immigration injunction, lawsuits

Dearborn, Mich. – The National Network for Arab American Communities (NNAAC) objects to the act of a federal district court judge in Texas who has temporarily blocked steps to move forward with new immigrant deferred action programs, which is delaying the chance for millions of U.S. immigrants to seek relief from the threat of deportation.

U.S. District Court Judge Andrew Hanen blocked President Barack Obama’s actions on immigration policy in a preliminary injunction related to implementing the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program, which permits undocumented parents of U.S. citizens or permanent residents to defer deportation and seek job benefits.  The program was blocked on the grounds that the Department of Homeland Security did not allow public comment on its rules regarding the execution of the program. Hanen’s injunction, which supports Texas and 25 other states that filed a lawsuit opposing the immigration reform initiatives, is particularly untimely because the deferred action programs were to start as early as Feb. 18, 2015 for some immigrants.

A Department of Homeland Security representative, in an official statement, said it will not begin accepting requests for the expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on Feb. 18. Also, until further notice, Homeland Security will suspend its plan to accept requests for DAPA.

This action by Hanen, who has before expressed anti-immigrant sentiment, is an obstacle for families who need to protect themselves from deportation. Immigrants must continue to prepare to move forward, despite Hanen’s ruling.

"This is a temporary set-back,” said Nadia Tonova, director of NNAAC. “We are confident that this decision will be overturned."

However, the lawsuit is still a move against immigrant families and advocates in their steps toward reform.

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The National Network for Arab American Communities (NNAAC), a project of ACCESS, is a national consortium of independent Arab American community-based organizations. Our mission is the development of Arab American community-based nonprofit organizations that understand, meet the needs, and represent the concerns of Arab Americans at a local level, while also collectively addressing those issues at a national level.

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