WASHINGTON D.C. — The Trump Administration ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in 2017. DACA gives work and school permits to young, undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children.
Antonion Alarcon was raised by his grandparents in Mexico until 2005, when, at the age of 10, he was reunited with his parents in the US.
“I was undocumented at the time, my parents were undocumented,” said Alarcon.
Then, in 2012 his parents returned to Mexico to care for his brother without him.
“It was my senior year in high school,” said Alarcon. “I was like, ‘well, there’s no way I’m going back to Mexico and I want to go to college.’ For my mom, it was difficult.”
A few months later, with the help of the DACA program, Alarcon became the first in his family to go to college. He is now one of the plaintiffs suing the Trump Administration for ending DACA—a case that will be heard on Tuesday here at the US Supreme Court.
Marielena Hincapie is the Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center, which represents Alarcon. She argues the Trump Administration did not provide a valid reason for ending the program.
“Every court that has looked at this issue has held that the administration arbitrarily and capriciously violated the Administrative Procedures Act,” said Hincapie.
The Trump Administration argues that DACA was never a legal program in the first place.
Alarcon said he’s worried he will lose his case.
“I think losing my work authorization will change my life,” said Alarcon. “But I think also it will give me the fuel to continue fighting for something better.”
Something all sides agree on: Congress needs to find a permanent solution for the young, undocumented immigrants.