WASHINGTON – After joining an amicus brief with the National Immigration Law Center and more than 150 organizations, the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) released the following statement of support for President Obama’s immigration actions to allow millions of immigrants to apply for relief from deportation and work authorization.

“The expanded DACA and DAPA programs provide needed relief for hard working immigrant families who call America home,” said Kathy Ko Chin, APIAHF president and CEO. “These executive actions are firmly within the President’s powers and blocking implementation of them is creating needless delay and holding up these individual’s lives.”

On February 16, 2015, a federal district court blocked implementation of expansion of an initiative that would have allowed certain immigrants who arrived in this country as children to apply for deportation relief and work authorization (known as an expansion of DACA). The court also blocked implementation of an initiative that would have allowed certain immigrant parents of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents to apply for deportation relief and work authorization (known as DAPA.)

Groups argue that delays in implementation harm the nation’s economy and prevent aspiring Americans from more fully participating in their communities. The brief features profiles of small business owners, primary breadwinners, and social activists who would be able to increase their economic and societal contributions if granted the relief proposed by DACA and DAPA.

Yesterday’s filing is the latest legal step in Texas et al. v. United States et al., the 26-state challenge to the administration’s immigration actions. On April 17, the Fifth Circuit will hear oral argument in a request for emergency stay of the lower court injunction. If granted, the emergency stay would allow the U.S. government to begin implementation of the DAPA and DACA initiatives.

Read the brief here.