PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Pennsylvania joined more than a dozen states in a lawsuit against the Trump Administration over the elimination of DACA, a program that protects 800,000 immigrants brought to America illegally as children from deportation.
Ending the program will cost the state millions.
Pennsylvania is home to 5,889 recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA program.
Each paid a fee, went through background checks and gave the government their personal information in exchange for certain protections.
“The federal government made a promise to these individuals,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro. “And these individuals relied on that promise.”
Shapiro says 87 percent of Pennsylvania’s DACA recipients are employed, bringing in an estimated $20 million in tax revenue to the Commonwealth.
“They have followed the rules,” Shapiro said. “They are contributing members of society.”
The suit alleges the Trump Administration decision to abruptly rescind DACA violates the Constitution and rule that allows individuals to reply on government action.
“This isn’t about whether you like DACA or president Trump or Barack Obama,” Shapiro said. “This is about the rule of law.”
Shapiro says the states are asking the court to keep DACA in place until Congress creates legislation.