The AAMC led more than 70 health professions organizations and joined more than 70 higher education associations in separate letters to Congress urging legislative action on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). The letters respond to the administration’s Sept. 5 decision to rescind DACA [See Washington Highlights, Sept. 8].
The Sept. 14 health professions letter states, “[W]e urge you to ensure that all members of the health care workforce with [DACA] status are able to continue their employment, education, training, and research, with passage of a permanent legislative remedy, such as the bipartisan, bicameral Dream Act of 2017 (S. 1615, H.R. 3440). By providing a legal pathway to permanent residency for undocumented Americans brought to the U.S. as children, Congress can help our country produce a diverse and culturally responsive health care workforce to meet the needs of underserved populations, improve cultural awareness, and promote health equity.”
The Sept. 12 higher education letter also urged Congress to “pass legislation as soon as possible to permanently protect these individuals,” and continues, “Preserving their status is the humane way to respond to the situation these innocent young people are facing. Children brought to the United States at a young age did not have a choice in the matter. It remains in America’s best interest to enable them to use their knowledge, skills and energy to make the strongest possible contribution to our country.”
Under the administration’s "6-month" wind down process, new DACA applications will not be accepted and individuals currently participating in DACA will lose their benefits when their individual 2-year DACA status expires after March 5, 2018.