SEIU Local 521 and Santa Clara County announced on Oct. 10, 2017, the filing of a joint lawsuit against the Administration to overturn its unlawful rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (“DACA”) program. DACA protects individuals brought to this country as children from deportation.
This legal action is the first in the nation filed jointly by an employer and a labor union on behalf of DACA beneficiary employees.
“We are going to do everything that we can as an organization to defend our workers, many of whom are actual DACA participants.”
– SEIU 521 Chief Elected Officer Riko Mendez
Listen to the rest of his speech here:
Santa Clara County Chapter Chair wRen Bradley said in Spanish to the crowd:
“Yo creo que vamos a representar nuestros miembros, nuestras comunidades y nuestros hijos. Porque los hijos de Daca son los hijos de todos nosotros.”
(Translation: “We are going to represent our members, our communities, and our children. Because the DACA children are all our children.”)
Dave Cortese, President of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, pointed out that this is the first lawsuit in the country filed jointly by an employer and its affected employees represented by SEIU Local 521. “The suit recognizes the immense contributions DACA recipients make to Santa Clara County,” stated Cortese.
In filing the lawsuit Santa Clara County Counsel James R. Williams said that the DACA repeal is about discrimination. “The cancellation of DACA was motivated by animus against Latino immigrants who make up approximately 93% of applicants, in violation of the equal protection principles of our constitution.” Santa Clara County Executive Jeff Smith echoed those sentiments saying both the union and the county are standing together as the moral authority: “Without these individuals in our community, this county would be a much worse place to live.”
“What this lawsuit is truly about is broken promises and accountability,” said SEIU Local 521 Chief Elected Officer Riko Mendez. DACA recipients were promised a future by the Federal Government and now that future is being ripped away without a good reason according to Mendez. He pledged the union will do everything it can to defend the workers. “We stand against the racist intentions that the Federal Government is trying to move. We support this lawsuit on behalf of all our workers.”
What can you do?
This issue is personal for many in our SEIU family and we must take action to protect our brothers and sisters. Call 1-866-584-3962 and tell your members of Congress that hard-working Dreamers deserve the opportunity to be productive members of our society.
Click here to learn more.