“Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” or DACA Has Been Rescinded. It is now widely known that the DACA program is being rescinded by the Trump Administration. Many Catholic and other leaders, including Archbishop Gregory and Bishop Hartmayer, have expressed their regret at the decision.
This Weekly Report is intended to share with all priests, brothers, sisters and others throughout the Archdiocese of Atlanta and Diocese of Savannah information related to the changing immigration landscape. This series of reports that began over four years ago, highlights support for immigrants from all countries expressed by Pope Francis and Catholic leaders, including our own bishops. We will continue to provide links to reliable information and websites that offer not only encouragement, but also practical information for all who are assisting immigrants.
DACA Resources. Information (and hysteria) about the recession of DACA is flooding the internet. Anyone whose status is affected by the Administration’s decision is well advised to consider their options carefully, especially in conjunction with an immigration lawyer. Options depend on an individual’s current status. Click here for a summary of options for multiple statuses. Those who may be eligible for renewal in the near future should pay particular attention to the October 5, 2017 deadline for renewal filing.
Catholic Charities Atlanta provides immigration legal services. More information is available on their website. Catholic Charities will conduct a DACA renewal assistance clinic at their Northlake Office (2305 Parklake Drive, Suite 150, Atlanta, GA 30345) from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 23rd.
Active Advocacy. While Dreamers must take action to protect their individual status, everyone can advocate for change to benefit the common good. Legislative action is needed. To help, contact the White House, your congressional representatives, the governor and state legislators. Visit this website for important talking points related to legislation supported by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and other immigration groups. The USCCB Justice for Immigrants campaign has also published additional ideas for effective advocacy.
Deportation is a Possibility for Some. Be Prepared to Protect Family Members! We cannot ignore the possibility that some, whether Dreamers or others, will face deportation. Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC), sponsored by the USCCB for over twenty-five years, has prepared state forms to help protect children and other family members if parents or caregivers are suddenly deported. The USCCB Justice for Immigrants campaign has also produced good community engagements resources. Parish leaders might be interested in these ten suggestions to help undocumented immigrants.
Share the Journey. On September 27, 2017, the Holy Father will launch a Caritas-led campaign, “Share the Journey,” which is aimed at increasing support and solidarity for immigrants and refugees. This campaign will be international; and in the United States, will be coordinated by Catholic Charities USA, Catholic Relief Services, and several offices in the USCCB. They will focus on a variety of important topics, including the Church’s engagement with immigrants and refugees, Catholic social teaching on migration, and the need to address the root causes that drive migration. The “Share the Journey” campaign will run for years.