DOWNTOWN KNOXVILLE - Dozens of people marched in solidarity for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program in downtown Knoxville Sunday afternoon.
They wanted to express the program's importance in the United States and within the Knoxville community.
"They are every bit of part of our community as anyone else on the street," Karen Lateus with Kindred Futures said. "Perhaps even more so because they are working so hard and so actively."
Several local organizations joined forces for the march supporting DACA. Last month, the Trump Administration announced a move to end the executive order.
The program allows nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants to work and study within the United States. The Center for American Progress said ending DACA would cost the state of Tennessee almost $350 million in gross domestic product.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions says the Obama-era initiative is unconstitutional because of the way former President Barack Obama put it in place.
"The policy was adopted unilaterally, to great controversy and legal concern," Sessions said in a news conference. "The executive branch, through DACA, deliberately sought to achieve what the legislative branch specifically refused to authorize on multiple occasions."
Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam hopes Congress can find a replacement for the program soon.
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