Donald Trump (Credit: Bob Levey/Telemundo)

Univision, Telemundo React to Trump Decision on DACA

Dreamers ‘deserve better than this,’ Falco says

Spanish-language TV networks Univision and Telemundo said they were disappointed with President Donald Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

The program allowed about 800,000 people who were brought to the U.S. as children to remain, go to school and work as Dreamers. Trump announced that the program will end next year unless Congress takes action.

“I am disappointed, to say the least, in today’s announcement by the Administration to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months,” said Univision CEO Randy Falco.

Related: Univision's Falco: CEOs Must Speak Out Against Hate, Violence

"Let’s be very clear – Dreamers are our students, soldiers, first responders, coworkers, neighbors, and friends. Here at UCI we will continue to stand by them, including those talented Dreamers working at our company to advance our mission of entertaining, informing, and empowering the Hispanic community and the rising American mainstream we serve. Their stories are unmistakably American. They deserve better than this,” Falco said.

“Telemundo stands with the 800,000 Dreamers who are integral to the economy, culture and spirit of our nation,” the Comcast-owned network said. “ We are disheartened by the decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. In addition to the human impact of this decision, repealing DACA will result in the loss of thousands of jobs in the United States and billions of dollars in economic growth over the next decade.  We urge Congress to act swiftly to preserve the rights of these valuable members of our community.  All of our elected representatives should be held accountable toward this end.”  

The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, whose members include the National Hispanic Media Association, condemned the move in no uncertain terms. "This decision is reprehensible from not only a moral standpoint, but also an economic one," it said.

TechNet, which represents tech companies, joind the chorus of boos.

“Ending DACA will be highly disruptive to the U.S. economy because of the impact on many young people currently working with legal work permits they acquired because of this program," said TechNet President Linda Moore. "Whether you agree with DACA or not, ending it without anything to replace it creates unnecessary uncertainty for our economy and for almost 800,000 young people in this country who have passed background checks, paid fees, and are contributing to our economy, pursuing their studies, or even serving in our military.  
 
“There is a broad and bipartisan consensus that we should not punish children for the actions of their parents," (something Trump also said, though he added, essentially, that the law should be the law). "Leaders in both parties have long talked about finding a legislative solution to resolve this situation but have allowed policy disagreements and politics to lead to gridlock. The President’s action now makes it an urgent priority for Congress to turn its sympathy for these young people into a law that ends the uncertainty they face.”

President Donald Trump defended the move, saying it was because the Obama Administration's executive action illegally bypassed Congress. 

"The Attorney General of the United States, the Attorneys General of many states, and virtually all other top legal experts have advised that the program is unlawful and unconstitutional and cannot be successfully defended in court," the President said Tuesday.
 
"There can be no path to principled immigration reform if the executive branch is able to rewrite or nullify federal laws at will."

Here is the complete statement from Univision CEO Randy Falco:

I am disappointed, to say the least, in today’s announcement by the Administration to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months.

The U.S. government is revoking the ability of roughly 800,000 DREAMers to continue to work and contribute in countless ways to the United States - the only home they have ever known. This is a failure to live up to a commitment already made to DREAMers and is contrary to America’s values and traditions.

As parents are sending their kids back to college, thousands of DREAMer students pursuing college degrees are trying to focus on learning, not knowing if they will be able to complete their studies. As the government sends more troops to Afghanistan, DREAMer soldiers will be deployed to fight on the front lines, knowing that the freedoms they are protecting may not be afforded to them when they return home. As employers work to build the U.S. economy, DREAMer employees who are paying taxes and contributing to the future of our nation face uncertainty of their own economic futures.

Let’s be very clear – DREAMers are our students, soldiers, first responders, coworkers, neighbors, and friends. Here at UCI we will continue to stand by them, including those talented DREAMers working at our company to advance our mission of entertaining, informing, and empowering the Hispanic community and the rising American mainstream we serve. Their stories are unmistakably American. They deserve better than this.

That is why today’s announcement should not be seen by those who espouse anti-immigrant sentiments as a “win” or a way to send hundreds of thousands of immigrants back into the shadows. We must not allow this move to foster ethnic discrimination in our neighborhoods, schools and workplaces.

Instead, this is a call to Congress to fix this mess before the United States experiences the estimated $280 to $460 billion reduction in economic growth from the loss of DREAMers in our workforce, as estimated by some studies. This is a call for Congress to work in a bipartisan fashion to enact meaningful immigration reform that takes into account those who were brought here as children and are raising their hands to learn, to serve, and to work should be allowed to legally remain in the U.S.

The American values of hard work and commitment have led millions of immigrants to the United States in search of opportunity. These values are embodied by DREAMers. It is time to permanently protect the DACA program.