A coalition of companies representing every major U.S. economic sector urged Congress on Thursday to protect Dreamers, saying the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has been crucial to the health of the economy.

In a letter to Democratic and Republican leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate, the Coalition for the American Dream said the likelihood of an additional adverse court ruling makes legislation to protect Dreamers imperative.

“Collectively, we represent the backbone of an American economy facing tremendous workforce challenges as a result of the pandemic,” the Coalition’s letter said. “We face another crisis if Congress fails to act on an issue that has strong bipartisan support from the American people.”

The letter was signed by more than 80 companies and business organizations, including BAL. It was published in advertisements in The Wall Street Journal, The Dallas Morning News and The Charlotte Observer.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that the 2012 memorandum that created DACA was unlawful. It also asked a lower court to consider the legality of the Biden administration regulation, which was designed to codify and protect DACA.

The court left in place an injunction that allows the government to adjudicate renewal applications for both DACA and DACA-related work authorization but not first-time applications. This injunction will remain in place pending a further ruling from the court.

“The 5th Circuit Court’s ruling makes it clear that Congress cannot afford to ignore this issue any longer,” the Coalition’s letter said. “Bipartisan measures have already been introduced in the U.S. House and Senate. We urge you to swiftly pass legislation this year that will help Dreamers, American businesses, and our country.”

BAL Analysis: The Biden administration and immigration advocates alike have stressed that the only permanent solution to protect Dreamers is congressional action. Because of the uncertainty surrounding the litigation, individuals who are eligible for renewals of DACA or DACA-related employment authorization are encouraged to submit applications as soon as possible. BAL will continue to monitor the ongoing litigation and provide updates on important developments. For more information, visit our DACA Resource Center here.

This alert has been provided by BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

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