The Trump administration announced plans this morning to rescind the DACA program initiated under the Obama administration. In response, Tim Cook has issued a memo to employees expressing the company’s intent to work with Congress on legislation that permanently protects those affected by the immigration policy change including employees at Apple.
In the memo, Cook says over 250 Apple employees across 28 states qualify as Dreamers and came from Canada, Mexico, Kenya, Mongolia, and other countries as early as the age of two.
Cook also suggested Apple will lobby Congress to pass legislation that keeps the immigration in policy before it is ends in six months, and the company is in contact with affected employees to offer support including access to immigration experts.
Tim Cook previously signed a letter asking Trump not to end DACA. Cook has spoken out against the Trump administration on other issues including leaving the Paris climate pact and the president’s reaction to the Charleston tragedy.
You can read the full memo from Tim Cook to Apple employees (via TechCrunch) below:
America promises all its people the opportunity to achieve their dreams through hard work and perseverance. At Apple, we’ve dedicated ourselves to creating products that empower those dreams. And at our best, we aspire to be part of the promise that defines America.
Earlier today, the Justice Department announced that President Trump will cancel the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months if Congress does not act to make the program permanent.
I am deeply dismayed that 800,000 Americans — including more than 250 of our Apple coworkers — may soon find themselves cast out of the only country they’ve ever called home.
DACA recognizes that people who arrived in the United States as children should not be punished for being here illegally. It lets these Americans, who have successfully completed rigorous background investigations, go to school, earn a living, support their families, pay taxes and work toward achieving their dreams like the rest of us. They are called Dreamers, and regardless of where they were born, they deserve our respect as equals.
I’ve received several notes over the weekend from Dreamers within Apple. Some told me they came to the U.S. as young as two years old, while others recounted they don’t even remember a time they were not in this country.
Dreamers who work at Apple may have been born in Canada or Mexico, Kenya or Mongolia, but America is the only home they’ve ever known. They grew up in our cities and towns, and hold degrees from colleges across the country. They now work for Apple in 28 states.
They help customers in our retail stores. They engineer the products people love and they’re building Apple’s future as part of our R&D teams. They contribute to our company, our economy and our communities just as much as you and I do. Their dreams are our dreams.
I want to assure you that Apple will work with members of Congress from both parties to advocate for a legislative solution that provides permanent protections for all the Dreamers in our country.
We are also working closely with each of our co-workers to provide them and their families the support they need, including the advice of immigration experts.
On behalf of the hundreds of employees at Apple whose futures are at stake; on behalf of their colleagues and on behalf of the millions more across America who believe, as we do, in the power of dreams, we issue an urgent plea for our leaders in Washington to protect the Dreamers so their futures can never be put at risk in this way again.
Despite this setback for our nation, I’m confident that American values will prevail and we will continue our tradition of welcoming immigrants from all nations. I’ll do whatever I can to assure this outcome.
Cook’s memo follows his public support for the Dreamers yesterday ahead of Trump’s decision.
For background on DACA:
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is an American immigration policy founded by the Obama administration in June 2012. DACA allows certain illegal immigrants who entered the country as minors, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility for a work permit.
You can also read the White House’s full comments on rescinding the program here.