Clergy members and other protest deportation of immigrants in Oakland Photo by Theo Rigby

A Temporary Setback to Executive Action

Despite uncertainty, now is the time for philanthropy to be bold

Program director Cathy Cha talks about the temporary halt to President Obama's executive action and what it does, and doesn't mean.

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Last Monday, a federal judge in Texas put a temporary halt to President Obama’s executive action on immigration. Legal experts widely believe that President Obama’s executive actions are constitutional and will ultimately prevail. By Friday, the White House announced that it will seek an emergency stay to block the injunction which would speed up the appeals process. If the stay is granted, the government could restart the executive programs that will protect millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation. Immigrant rights advocates advocated strongly for the stay—they want the programs up and running while the appeals process plays out.

In this time of uncertainty, I hope philanthropy can be bold.

Now is not the time to slow down investments or planning for implementing the President’s executive action. At the Haas, Jr. Fund, we are working with other funders and immigrant leaders to make sure our home state is investing in what’s needed to ensure that as many of the 1.5 million eligible Californians as possible apply for the administrative relief. This includes developing creative partnerships to outreach to immigrant communities, application assistance, legal services and more.

This isn’t the first challenge to real progress for America’s immigrants, and it certainly won’t be the last. The refrain from advocates is “not if, but when.” I hope funders will join the movement’s chorus.

For the latest on the President’s Action and what it means for immigrants, visit the NILC website.