ACHA Statement on DACA Repeal

Recently, the lingering status of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has become a prominent point of political contention. DACA provides protection and renewable two-year work permits for nearly 800,000 "dreamers" brought into the United States as young children by their parents. These individuals have built lives for themselves in the United States, where they attend our nation’s schools and colleges, contribute to our workforce, and serve in our nation's military.

The American College Health Association (ACHA) reiterates its belief that the termination of the DACA program will seriously jeopardize the physical and mental health and well-being of thousands of our nation’s college students. In addition, the uncertainty of the program’s status places an immeasurable burden on the ability of these students to learn, achieve, and graduate.

The United States is a nation of immigrants. “Dreamers” themselves did not make the decision to come here, but the U.S. is now truly their home. In America, the individual and societal benefits of education cannot be understated, and terminating access to education seriously jeopardizes the dream. In addition, the decision to phase out DACA and deport thousands of young people to countries they have never truly known violates our national principles of fairness, equality, and justice. Therefore, the American College Health Association urges leaders in Congress to defend the “dreamers” by swiftly enacting legislation that will protect their legal status to remain, study, and work in the United States. To do otherwise is unhealthy, unjust, and un-American.

Updated January 18, 2018