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U.S. companies urge Congress to help 'Dreamers'

12 January 2018

The CEOs have settled upon this day as they maintain that doing so will give the government some time to implement a new program before DACA's expiration date. Not only would failing to extend DACA cause untold human suffering, they note, it could cost the US economy $215 billion in lost GDP.

Although DACA isn't set to expire until March 5, the group requested in the letter that lawmakers pass legislation by January 19, which is the deadline for Congress to pass a bill for government funding to avoid a shutdown, The Hill reports.

"The imminent termination of the DACA program is creating an impending crisis for workforces across the country", the letter (PDF) says.

It is critical that Congress act to pass legislation before January 19th.

"Failure to act in time will lead to businesses losing valuable talent, cause disruptions in the work force, and will result in significant costs", the letter sent to Senate and House leaders of both parties said.

The letter, first reported by The Hill, notes "that the overwhelming majority of the American public of all political backgrounds agrees that we should protect Dreamers from deportation".

On Tuesday, a federal judge in California moved to temporarily block the administration's efforts to end DACA while challenges to Trump's move play out in court. (Democrats have been willing to consider changes to the chain-migration rules at least for the DACA population itself.) The visa diversity lottery doesn't directly relate to DACA, but it allows immigrants to come here on a completely random basis and few are willing to defend the program on its merits.

On Monday, President Trump held a publicized, bipartisan meeting with lawmakers to discuss continuing protections for those who fell under the DACA program and broader immigration reform.

Chief executives of more than 100 companies-including Facebook Inc., Apple Inc. and General Motors Co. -are urging Congress to pass by next week legislation to protect "Dreamers", undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children.

A group marches in Minneapolis last week against President Trump's decision to end DACA.