T’ruah condemns DACA announcement

RELEASE DATE: July 28, 2020

NEW YORK — T’ruah, a rabbinic human rights organization with more than 2,000 members, condemned the Trump Administration’s announcement that it plans to reject new applications for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and called on the administration to reverse the decision. In response to today’s announcement Rabbi Jill Jacobs, executive director of T’ruah, said: 

“Today’s announcement is another cruel action taken by the Trump administration that will lead to greater suffering of young people and their families. Welcoming immigrants and strangers remains a core Jewish value, as well as an American one. These young people, who in many cases have never known another country, are studying, working, and contributing to our communities. Leaving America — their home — and returning to the countries where they were born could even put their lives in danger.

“Many American Jews, including my own family, are alive today because their families were able to immigrate to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. For many of us, the immigrant story is our story. We call on Congress to protect Dreamers and for the administration to begin processing new applications immediately.”

In 2017, T’ruah launched Mikdash, the Jewish Sanctuary Movement, to protect immigrants threatened with deportation. To date, more than 70 synagogues throughout the U.S. have joined the network. They are committed to protecting Dreamers if Congress does not act to protect DACA and if ICE begins targeting Dreamers. T’ruah has brought more than 70 of its rabbis and Jewish leaders to the border to witness the human rights violations there, organized rallies in over 50 cities last August to protest the detention of immigrants and asylum seekers, and is organizing an online action this Tisha B’av (July 30) in protest of the Trump administration’s anti-immigrant and anti-refugee policies.

The DACA program, started in 2012, allows certain undocumented young people, brought to the country as children, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility for a work permit. The policy has been a lifeline for more than 800,000 young people who know the United States as their true home. In its last session, the Supreme Court rejected Trump administration attempts to end the program.