September 25, 2017, 1:39 am
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Thousands of Filipinos face deportation (1)

AN estimated 10,000 Filipinos might be deported as a result of Washington’s decision to rescind a program that allowed immigrant children to stay legally in the United States.

This might happen after President Donald Trump revoked the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals or DACA program that was covered by an executive order issued by then President Barack Obama in 2012 that was envisioned to protect undocumented immigrant children from deportation.

The DACA program provided temporary legal status that allowed qualified undocumented immigrant children from the Philippines and other countries to stay, study and work in the US. The program does not lead to US citizenship, but it is renewable every two years. 

 In his reaction to President Trump’s decision, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter S. Cayetano said “we will authorize with certain limitations the use of the Assistance to Nationals Fund and the Legal Assistance Fund to assist immigration-related cases such those arising from the decision of President Trump to revoke the DACA.,”

Cayetano his statement shortly after President Trump announced last Tuesday that he was revoking the DACA program and gave the US Congress up to March 5, 2018 to come up with a law that would prevent the deportation of as many as 800,000 people covered by the program.

At the same time, Cayetano called on members of the Filipino community in the US, particularly those affected by the change in policy, to remain hopeful and actively support efforts for the passage of legislation that would benefit those enrolled in DACA. “While we hope for the best in the form of legislative solution,” Cayetano said, “those affected should likewise prepare for the worse,” Cayetano said, adding that “other possible legal options for the affected Filipinos should also be explored. 

“In any event, we are ready to welcome and assist our kababayans in whatever way we can if they returned to the Philippines,” concluded Secretary Cayetano.
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