The Minnesota State Bar Association (MSBA), an association of roughly 15,000 Minnesota Lawyers, has adopted an official position on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) repeal. The MSBA position represents a strong showing by Minnesota Lawyers in support of DACA recipients, often called "Dreamers." The DACA program has been an amazing and well-deserved immigration benefit for almost 800,000 individuals who came to the U.S. while under 16 years of age, and meet certain criteria, including that they have no significant criminal history. The DACA program, implemented by the Obama Administration, has provided work authorization and protection from removal (deportation) using powers granted to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) by Congress. President Trump, in a statement issued by Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Tuesday, September 5, 2017, made the decision to end the DACA program, placing these hundreds of thousands of Dreamers in a precarious legal situation.
The MSBA position is based on a recommendation from the MSBA Immigration Law Section Council and the MSBA Diversity and Inclusion Council, which are sub-groups of the MSBA. Both sub-groups debated the wording of the proposed statement and came to a consensus. This blogger, who serves as Secretary of the Immigration Section Council, was honored to present the proposed statement to the MSBA Assembly, the MSBA's legislative body, in its meeting today, Friday, September 14, 2017. The discussion about the policy position included the argument that compassion and consideration of "equities" (positive vs. negative factors) are built into our legal system.Read More