Oct. 21, 2019

AUSTIN, Texas – George E. Martin, president of St. Edward’s University, issued the following statement on the filing of an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to stand in support of DACA recipients. On October 4, 2019, St. Edward’s joined more than 164 colleges and universities from across the country in signing an amicus brief supporting the roughly 700,000 young immigrants who came to the United States as children and who hold Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). This “friend of the court” brief was coordinated by the Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration. DACA recipients are American in every way; they built their lives here and contribute to our campuses, communities and our country’s economy every day. St. Edward’s is proud to support DACA recipients, and we believe it is vital that we protect this vulnerable population when their futures are in question.

By joining this amicus brief, St. Edward’s continues to demonstrate unwavering support for our DACA and immigrant students.

“Last year, I urged both of our Texas Senators and several U.S. House members to shape immigration policies that are wise, humane and create a clear path to citizenship, especially for DACA recipients,” Martin said. “Additionally, we created a partnership with Catholic Charities of Central Texas in support of our students who need legal assistance for DACA renewal applications and other immigration issues.”

“DACA students bring important and impactful diversity to campuses across the nation, especially ours. We are invested in the success of immigrant youth and the continued existence of DACA,” Martin added.

DACA provided work authorization and protection from deportation to nearly 700,000 young people, enabling them to better support themselves and their families financially, build their careers and access higher education. If this vital program is rescinded, DACA recipients will lose their ability to work and study legally, will be forced from their jobs, and will be subject to immediate deportation. The Supreme Court should agree with what federal courts across the country have made clear: the administration’s decision to terminate DACA was unlawful and has caused irreparable damage to Dreamers and their families and loved ones.

Background: Since 2012, DACA has been extraordinarily successful, offering temporary protection from deportation and the ability to work legally to more than 700,000 young immigrants who came to the United States as children. The program has benefited these Dreamers, including our students, their families, their communities, and our economy tremendously. On September 5, 2017, the administration announced that they were terminating the DACA program, jeopardizing the futures of hundreds of thousands of young people. In the past two years, multiple courts have kept renewals ongoing for current DACA recipients, but Dreamers have still been forced to live court case to court case, uncertain about their futures and in fear of being separated from their families and the lives they have built over decades in the United States. The future of DACA—and the futures of hundreds of thousands of Dreamers—will be argued at the U.S. Supreme Court on November 12, 2019. The Court could hand down a ruling as soon as February 2020 determining if Dreamers will lose the ability to live, study, and work in the United States.