The Trump Administration's decision Tuesday to wind down the immigration program designed to protect undocumented immigrants who were brought into the United States as children quickly received outrage and sparked protests across the nation.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the U.S. would rescind Obama's 2012 order that created the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, stating Congress should be responsible for immigration policy.
Sessions said the protections provided through DACA were an "unconstitutional exercise of authority by the executive branch."
The program currently shields about 800,000 people, who are sometimes called "Dreamers,” according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Ending DACA could cost nearly 700,000 people their jobs over the next two years, according to a study by the Center for American Progress, an advocacy group, and FWD.us, a pro-DACA group founded by tech leaders including Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
The study states over the past five years, more than 90 percent of DACA recipients found jobs across companies in the U.S. If DACA were repealed and renewals were put on hold, an average of about 30,000 individuals could be fired from their job every month. This means for every business day, an average of more than 1,400 people would be out of a job.
DACA recipients live in all 50 states so the impact would be felt across the nation. Employers would have the costly task of finding replacements for an employee lost because of the changes to federal policy.
The Migration Policy Institute found DACA-eligible workers are concentrated in white-collar jobs as opposed to the DACA ineligible who are do more manual labor.
Removing DACA recipients from the workforce will cost more than $460 billion in GDP loss over a decade and cost employers more than $3 billion in unnecessary turnover costs. Repealing the program would also cut contributions to Medicare and Social Security by more than $24 billion over a decade, according to the study.
California has the highest number of DACA recipients in the country and therefore, would receive the biggest blow to the economy due to job losses. In January, the Center for American Progress found the Golden State would suffer a GDP loss of more than $11 billion annually if it were to lose its DACA workers.
Along with receiving higher wages with white-collar jobs, DACA recipients are also buying cars, homes and other goods which help boost the economy.
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