Catholic Charities of Dallas disappointed, but “still hopeful”
DALLAS, TX (June 23, 2016) – Nearly a year and a half after President Obama’s executive action to allow a legal reprieve for millions of undocumented immigrants was challenged, the Supreme Court today tied in a 4-4 ruling, upholding the injunction against the President’s order. According to Catholic Charities of Dallas (CCD) President and CEO Dave Woodyard, “we are disappointed in the decision, but still hopeful the merits of the case will stand strong in the lower court.”
“This is certainly not what we hoped for,” says CCD Director of Immigration and Legal Services Vanna Slaughter, “however, the equally divided court speaks to the diverse perspectives that still remain on this issue. We remain optimistic that upon the full hearing of the merits in the case the President’s order will prevail and that the DAPA and extended DACA programs can go forward.”
Of the estimated 10.9 million undocumented individuals residing throughout the U.S., approximately five million would have been eligible for relief through the two programs impacted by today’s Supreme Court decision. Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA)would allow the parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent resident children to obtain temporary employment authorization in the U.S., and the Extended Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program would do the same for approximately 5,000 individuals in Dallas County who currently do not qualify for DACA.
According to the Migration Policy Institute, an estimated 100,000 individuals residing in Dallas County will benefit from DACA/DAPA. Based on past immigration reform experience, Slaughter estimates that should the injunction be overturned, CCD could see between 8 -10,000 applicants.
“We have helped thousands of immigrants over the past 40 years,” says Slaughter, “and we stand ready to help thousands more if and when the time comes. These hard working, law abiding immigrants deserve to receive the legal help they need.”
Similar to the assistance provided by CCD to immigrants through DACA since August 2012, if the injunction does not hold, the non-profit’s staff of attorneys and immigration case managers would act as the trusted go-to resource for eligible immigrants.
Statement on U.S. vs Texas by Catholic Charities USA
Alexandria, VA (June 23, 2016) — Today the Supreme Court, by a 4-4 vote, allowed a lower court decision to stand which blocks the implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) executive actions.
“While today’s split opinion does not decide the ultimate validity of the DACA and DAPA programs, it does mean that approximately 4 million people, including individuals who came to America as children, will continue to live in fear of deportation and without the immediate ability to improve their lives through education and good jobs,” said Sister Donna Markham OP, PhD, President and CEO of CCUSA. “While this ruling is deeply unfortunate, my hope is that the decision will renew our national dialogue on addressing comprehensive immigration reform and bring parity and equality to all God’s children.”
In 2014, Catholic Charities USA member agencies and affiliates offered refugee and immigrant services to 325,679 clients. Services provided to these clients included citizenship applications, family visa petitions, legal representations and DACA applications, among others. Immigration and refugee services are provided by Catholic Charities agencies in nearly every state, a clear indication of the expansive scope of this ongoing national issue.
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About Catholic Charities USA
Since 1910, Catholic Charities has served as a national advocate for the most vulnerable in our nation, guided by the basic belief in the inherent dignity of every human being. From the beginning, the organization has stayed true to its mission to provide service to people in need, to advocate for justice in social structures, and to call the entire church and other people of good will to do the same. To learn more about how to get involved with your local Catholic Charities agency please visit,CatholicCharitiesUSA.org/Find.
President Obama’s Immigration Relief Action
Catholic Charities of Dallas Calls President Obama’s Immigration Relief a “Welcome, Long-Awaited Decision”; Outlines Impact for Greater Dallas
Non-profit readies to provide assistance to thousands of eligible immigrants
DALLAS, TX (November 21, 2014) – After years of preparing for Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR), Catholic Charities President/CEO Arne Nelson says the Dallas-based non-profit is ready to act to assist the thousands of eligible immigrants in North Texas who will qualify under President Obama’s new directive announced yesterday evening.
Since 1975, Catholic Charities of Dallas (CCD) has assisted immigrants in North Texas under many prior such programs, including the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which the President similarly established under an executive order in 2012.
“We welcome the President’s long-awaited announcement, since providing legal assistance to low-income immigrants is central to our broader mission to help people in need in Greater Dallas, particularly those who are newcomers and those viewed as ‘strangers’ to our community,” says Nelson.
The action will provide relief to an estimated 5.3 million immigrants currently in the U.S. without authorization, and within that, the Migration Policy Institute estimates people living in Texas potentially eligible could range from 700,000 to one million. Of this estimate, approximately 25 percent or 185,750 could be living in North Texas, and based on Catholic Charities of Dallas’ experience and discussions with area non-profits, Nelson says they organization anticipates CCD could see up to 15 percent of that number or approximately 27,000 people.
According to Catholic Charities of Dallas’ Director of Immigration Vanna Slaughter, the President’s directive will allow eligible persons to apply for protection from deportation and for authorization to work in the U.S. Eligible people will include those residing in the U.S. since before January 1, 2010 and are also the parents of a U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident child. They must also not be an enforcement priority under newly issued guidance. The President’s plan also includes an expansion of the DACA program.
“We hope that the final precise provisions will be as inclusive as possible,” adds Slaughter. “Immigrants throughout the country, and particularly in North Texas, have waited patiently and faithfully for an opportunity to regularize their immigration status in the U.S. so as to continue contributing to the fabric of our communities.”
Similar to the assistance provided by Catholic Charities of Dallas to immigrants through DACA since August 2012, the non-profit’s staff of attorneys and immigration case managers anticipate hosting clinics, offering extended hours, providing information sessions and acting as the trusted go-to resource for immigrants eligible for the temporary deportation relief.
“We have helped thousands of immigrants under many prior programs since 1975,” says Slaughter, “and we stand ready to help thousands more when the President’s actions go into effect.”
Based on the President’s announcement, it is anticipated that people will be able to begin applying for this administrative relief within six months.