The US Supreme Court has thwarted the Trump administration's attempt to crush the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program introduced by Barack Obama administration.
DACA was introduced in 2012 to protect qualified young immigrants who had been brought illegally to the country.
It is a program that protects undocumented immigrants brought to the country as children, a reprieve for nearly 650,000 recipients known as “dreamers.”
The decision was written by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and joined by the court’s four liberals.
Trump administration has made several unsuccessful attempts to crush the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Roberts stated that the administration did not follow procedures required by law, and did not properly weigh how ending the program would affect those who had come to rely on its protections against deportation, and the ability to work legally.
These DACA recipients are fighting coronavirus, even as they fight to stay in the country. And while the Supreme Court is expected to decide the fate of DACA, some health-care workers worry their future in the U.S. could be in jeopardy.
“We do not decide whether DACA or its rescission are sound policies,” Roberts wrote.
“We address only whether the Department of Homeland Security complied with the procedural requirement that it provides a reasoned explanation for its action.
"Here the agency failed to consider the conspicuous issues of whether to retain forbearance and what if anything to do about the hardship to DACA recipients.
"That dual failure raises doubts about whether the agency appreciated the scope of its discretion or exercised that discretion in a reasonable manner," he added.
Nearly 800,000 people over the years have participated in the program, which provides a chance for enrollees to work legally in the United States as long as they follow the rules and have a clean record.
More than 90 percent of DACA recipients are employed and 45 percent are in school, according to one government study. Advocates recently told the Supreme Court that nearly 30,000 work in the health care industry, and their work was necessary to fighting the coronavirus pandemic.
The Trump administration said the DACA program, which Obama authorized through executive action, was unlawful.