Amid the tumult in Washington, one matter important to our Lowcountry, our state and our nation is the status of the thousands of young people who are currently protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), or otherwise called the Dreamers.
What does the “dream” mean to those 600 people in Beaufort County and 6,400 in the state of South Carolina? Their dream is to live, work, contribute to their home — America. These Dreamers have been in the United States virtually all their lives. Locally, they have graduated from our high schools, many achieving fine academic credentials, worked in our communities, and filled our churches.
Under DACA they have been able to work, drive, help sustain their families, and try for higher levels of education, even though they would have to pay out-of- state tuition.
Recent data in your newspaper showed that the South Carolina economy would lose $262 million over a 10-year period if DACA were to end, including a loss of $50 million in economic benefit here in the Lowcountry.
It is past time for Congress to pass the Dream Act as sponsored by our own U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham. More than 65 percent of Republicans favor saving the Dreamers with a path to eventual citizenship. U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford has met with several Dreamers who poured out their emotional pleas for his support, but he remains non-committal. Now is the time for action. Call Mark Sanford to support these Dreamers at 843-521- 2530.
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