Thousands of Idaho Immigrants Continue to Wait, Prepare for Implementation as Long Legal Battle of Immigration Action Unfolds
Boise, ID– Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit denied the US Department of Justice’s request for an emergency stay in the anti-immigrant lawsuit, Texas v. United States of America. Texas Federal Judge Andrew Hanen issued an injunction in mid-February temporarily halting the implementation of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programs. Thousands of Idaho immigrants, up to as many as five million immigrants across the country, are forced to wait, continuing to live in fear of deportation and being torn from their families.
“Governor Butch Otter and State Attorney Lawrence Wasden strategically filed this case in order to delay relief for hardworking immigrants in Idaho” said Ruby Mendez, Senior Policy Fellow of the Idaho Community Action Network “We are confident that we will win this lawsuit and, finally, millions of hardworking immigrants will be able to live, work, and stay in the only country they call home.”
Members of the Idaho Community Action Network who consider Idaho as their home such as Vicente Valentin, who is eligible for the DAPA program must wait patiently while the there is a decision made regarding the injunction. An active member of the organization, community leader and father of three children, is always concerned about his status, everyday he makes sure he lets his family know how much he loves and hopes at the end of the day from long day at work he returns to them without a problem.
The Fifth Circuit will likely hold a hearing to decide whether to lift the preliminary injunction and allow implementation of the new DAPA/DACA+ programs to proceed. At the same time, the DOJ could ask the U.S. Supreme Court to impose an emergency stay against the injunction.
Despite the slow movement of the anti-immigrant lawsuit through the court system, support for immigrant families and the deferred action programs has been building. More than 100 legal scholars have come forward declaring President Obama acted within his authority. Separate amicus briefs and public statements of support have been made by governors, attorneys general, law enforcement officers, dozens of large city mayors and public officials, and others in the case supporting the expanded DACA and DAPA programs.
“From the beginning, this lawsuit has been a fear tactic by anti-immigrant politicians to scare away eligible immigrants from applying for DACA and DAPA. We’ve seen these kinds of attacks before, and our communities have continued to grow stronger and more united. There’s no doubt about it – DAPA and DACA are legally sound, morally right, and economically smart – and the anti-immigrant politicians in this lawsuit need to get out of the way so millions can come forward and further contribute to their communities”, said Marc Schlegel, Pastor of the Mennonite Church in Boise.