HOUSTON, TEXAS – A Latino civil rights organization and other attorneys representing DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) recipients are appealing the decision of a federal court in Texas ruling that the initiative is unlawful, according to papers filed in federal court today.

On behalf of 22 DACA recipients who are intervening defendants in the case, MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund) and co-counsel at Ropes & Gray filed a notice of appeal of a July 16 ruling by U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen.  In his decision, Hanen concluded that the 2012 DACA initiative violates the Administrative Procedure Act. In his order, Hanen allowed DACA to continue for current recipients and permitted the continued processing of renewals, but did not allow the federal government to grant any first-time applications.

Please attribute the following statement to Thomas A. Saenz, MALDEF president and general counsel:

“The ongoing failure of the Congress to act to provide permanent protection and a pathway to citizenship for DACA recipients necessitates the filing of this appeal to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.  There are strong legal grounds for a successful appeal because Judge Hanen failed to account for recent changes in the law governing several critical elements of the case.  We look forward to a successful appeal on behalf of our courageous clients, even as we urge Congress to act to prevent the necessity of this appeal.”

Please attribute the following statement to Nina Perales, MALDEF vice president of litigation:

“With DACA, the Department of Homeland Security uses the discretion granted to it by Congress to give DREAMers, who are low priorities for removal, an opportunity to live and work in the U.S. until there is a more permanent solution to their situation.  For this reason, DACA is an important part of the immigration system and should be upheld as lawful.”

Read the notice of appeal HERE.

Read the district court decision HERE.

Read a timeline of the case HERE.