Google, Facebook and Others Unite to Lobby for ‘Dreamers’

Google, Microsoft, Facebook and nearly 20 other top U.S. companies are teaming up to launch a coalition to fight for young illegal immigrants facing deportation under the Trump administration, according to a report in Reuters.

An Obama-era program called DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, allowed undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children to obtain work permits. In September, President Donald Trump said the program will start expiring in March 2018, making the nearly 800,000 people protected under DACA—known as Dreamers—vulnerable to deportation.

It’s up to the U.S. Congress to pass legislation to grant Dreamers temporary or permanent legal immigration status.  A new coalition formed by technology giants and other industry leaders wants to make that happen.

A plan is being outlined by the newly formed Coalition for the American Dream, comprised of roughly two dozen U.S. companies, to ask Congress to pass bipartisan legislation this year that would allow Dreamers to continue working in the country, according to documents seen by Reuters.

While spokespeople from Intel and Uber confirmed their involvement to Reuters, it’s no surprise to see some of the country’s technology giants team up to lobby Congress.

Microsoft President Brad Smith urged Congress to act fast when the decision to end DACA was first announced.

“We believe this means that Congress now needs to reprioritize the fall legislative calendar… Congress should adopt legislation on DACA before it tries to adopt a tax reform bill,” wrote Smith in a September blog post.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg called the decision “cruel” and said it’s up to Congress to “show that our government can make important things happen.” Zuckerberg co-founded a pro-immigration group called that’s penned two open letters to Congress about DACA’s termination.

In one letter, the bipartisan organization wrote that at least 72 per cent of the top 25 Fortune 500 companies count DACA recipients among their employees.