Arizona vs. Dreamers
Last Monday, the Arizona Supreme Court backed the Court of Appeals on last year’s ruling that will eliminate the benefits of college tuition for student…
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The Arizona Supreme Court has decided to put an additional obstacle to around 2,000 undocumented young students who arrived in the country as children (Dreamers), in their struggle to lead a normal American life.
According to AZ Central, the court ruling would prohibit Arizona colleges from granting in-state tuition to young immigrants, having "unanimously agreed with the Arizona Court of Appeals’ ruling, that said existing federal and state laws don’t allow the Maricopa Community Colleges to grant in-state tuition rates for DACA recipients”.
According to a Univision report, the so-called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA) offers "protection from deportation and work permits (...) but it doesn’t grant a permanent migratory status to its beneficiaries. They are also not eligible for federal scholarships."
Until Monday, these young DACA beneficiaries were able to "receive lower in-state tuition rates at Arizona State University, University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University since 2015," explained NBC News.
Furthermore, and according to a document cited by the media, "the in-state rate for undergraduate students at Arizona State University is $10,640 – compared to $26,470 for non-resident students”.
However, the Arizona Board of Regents approved a lower tuition rate in 2015 for non-residents who have graduated from a high school in the state, which would be about 150% of a state tuition ($14,751) as AZ Central continues.
While the Supreme Court did not elaborate on its decision - arguing that the full sentence would be published on May 14 - it did say that "the university colleges and other state universities will have all the time possible to plan those affected by the decision."
For Hispanic representatives of the state, such as Rubén Gallego of the 7th Congressional District, the Court's decision "will slam the door on thousands of Arizona students who want nothing more than to pursue an education," he said in a statement through Twitter.
"These Dreamers grew up attending Arizona schools, and want to pursue careers that will give back to Arizona’s communities and boost our economy," he continued. "But thanks to (the ruling), they will now have to pay triple what their classmates pay in order to achieve those goals - meaning many may not have the ability to attend college at all."
The AZ Supreme Court's decision to block Dreamers from in-state tuition is a terrible blow to AZ students who want nothing more than to pursue their American dreams. My statement: pic.twitter.com/ArbBbz1Rh0— Ruben Gallego (@RepRubenGallego) 9 de abril de 2018
This is not the first time that the state of Arizona has attacked undocumented young immigrants.
Since 2012, the state has tried to deny Dreamers the right to have a driver's license, after then-Governor Jan Brewer issued an executive order that tried to ban undocumented youth "from any state public benefit," AZ Central then reported.
The order was denounced by a group of pro-immigrant organizations and brought to trial through a lawsuit.
Finally, last March, the Supreme Court of the United States rejected the Arizona government's appeal, saying that "it would be infringing on the federal power to make immigration policy."