MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota state officials estimate there are thousands of young people in Minnesota who were brought to the United States illegally by their parents.
Many are now in school or working, and their economic impact is significant.
They are enrolled in DACA, which is shorthand for the program “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.”
DACA supporters decried the presidential order ending it Tuesday at the Minnesota Capitol.
“We want people to stop blaming our parents and to acknowledge that we’re families,” said Juventino Meza, justice research project director at the immigration rights organization Navigate MN. “If you really care about the integrity of a family, you should be caring about our families.”
Minnesota has 6,300 previously-undocumented young people brought to the United States by their parents.
A 2016 study produced by the Humphrey School of Public Affairs — funded by the Minneapolis Foundation, Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, Minnesota Business Immigration Coalition, Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota and LatinoLead — found economic benefits:
Revoking DACA could stoke deportation fears. In Minnesota before DACA: 63 percent worried about getting deported to their country of birth.
After DACA: Only 13 percent.
The DACA report says Minnesota permanent immigration reform would generate thousands of new jobs and significant tax revenues.
That’s important at a time when 40 percent of Minnesota’s workforce is eligible to retire by 2020.