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The Hill: Unions Unite to Urge Congress for Permanent Action for Dreamers, TPS & DED Holders

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Rafael Bernal at The Hill reports that earlier today, more than 30 labor unions united in a letter addressed to members of Congress urging them to enact a permanent legislative solution for Dreamers, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) holders. More specifically, the labor voices highlight the important roles that Dreamers and TPS and DED holders have in our economies. They are a vital part of our workforce, and stripping them of their legal status will have disastrous implications.

With the help of organizations like Working Families United, SEIU, and LiUNA, union leaders across the nation made their concerns heard for the hundreds and thousands of people across the nation who have been affected by the Trump administration’s termination of DACA, TPS, and DED.

Bernal’s article is excerpted below and available in full here.

A coalition of top labor unions on Monday called on Congress to pass expansions on programs to protect immigrants with temporary permits.

In a letter to Congress, more than 30 labor unions led by the AFL-CIO and Working Families United asked for protections for “Dreamers” — immigrants who arrived in the country illegally as minors — and beneficiaries of two humanitarian immigration programs, temporary protected status (TPS) and deferred enforced departure (DED).

“For the labor movement, these programs have been vital in ensuring that thousands of working people have rights on the job and the freedom to negotiate together for fair pay and working conditions,” said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.

… The Trump administration has steadily cut back on TPS designations, parting from previous Republican and Democratic administrations, who more or less summarily renewed those designations.

The administration also let DED expire, sitting down a program that gave benefits to thousands of people displaced from war-torn Liberia.

Trump’s orders on TPS and DED have been blocked by courts, as has his order to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which protects up to 800,000 Dreamers.

Democratic Reps. Lucille Roybal-Allard (Calif.) and Nydia Velázquez (N.Y.) are expected to present a bill to protect all three populations on March 12.

The union leaders said their sectors would be severely impacted if immigrants in those three categories do not receive permanent immigration benefits.

“Dreamers, TPS and DED recipients have, for decades, done the work that that American industries and our local economies rely on, and they deserve to stay,” said Painters Union General President Ken Rigmaiden.