ST. PAUL, MN - Governor Mark Dayton and Lt. Governor Tina Smith today urged the federal government to continue the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative, to protect from deportation those people, who were brought to America as children of undocumented immigrants. Governor Dayton and Lt. Governor Smith also recently joined with leaders from around the country to sign a letter to President Trump urging support for DACA.
The following is a statement from Governor Mark Dayton:
"I continue to stand by Minnesota's 'Dreamers,' whose parents brought them to this country; but who have worked very hard to contribute to our schools, our communities, and our state. They deserve the same opportunities to work hard and succeed as other Minnesotans, and they will add to our economy, when they do. As long as I am Governor, Minnesota will stand by the commitments we have made to them."
The following is a statement from Lt. Governor Tina Smith:
"Dreamers are our friends, neighbors, and family members. They are Minnesotans. Dreamers enrich the fabric of our communities and help create opportunity for everyone. In Minnesota, our Administration will continue to support these young people, brought here as children. We will keep on fighting for state policies that unite people and expand opportunity. Ultimately, solutions to this country's immigration challenges require federal solutions. I urge President Trump to continue the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. It is wrong to do anything less."
Since DACA was introduced, nearly 800,000 young people have been screened and approved, including nearly 6,300 individuals in Minnesota. A recent survey of DACA recipients found that 95 percent of them were currently employed or enrolled in school, and 49 percent said they moved to a job that better fits their education and training.
Under Governor Dayton's leadership, Minnesota has worked to make higher education and healthcare more accessible for Minnesota Dreamers. Last year, the Minnesota Department of Human Services announced that all Minnesotans who meet the eligibility requirements would be able to apply for healthcare through MinnesotaCare, a high-quality health care plan for low-income Minnesotans. And in 2013, Governor Dayton signed the MN Dream Act, to increase access to state higher education financial aid for Minnesotans, regardless of their federal immigration status. Last year, 485 Minnesotans were awarded funding to pursue higher education under the MN Dream Act.
Last month, Minnesota Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken joined with 40 of their Senate colleagues to send a letter to President Trump, in support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program.
Office of the Governor & Lt. Governor, Communications Department
130 State Capitol, 75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155
T: 651-201-3400 | E: Dayton.Media@state.mn.us