Monterey Declares Itself a “Dreamers County”

You’ve heard of sanctuary cities and counties. Now you can officially add “Dreamers county” to your lexicon.

Last week, supervisors declared Monterey a “dreamers county” in response to President Trump's decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) over a period of six months. Monterey County is the first to issue the largely symbolic proclamation, which declares support for undocumented youth and calls on Congress to enact swift legislation to protect members of the program, also known as “Dreamers.”

“The sanctuary city and county movement started with a few cities declaring sanctuary,” said District 1 Supervisor Luis Alejo, who introduced the measure. “In a similar way, I hope that Monterey County declaring itself a dreamer’s county could inspire other cities to be ‘cities of dreamers.’”

Alejo’s resolution received unanimous support from the board. DACA, which was first enacted by President Obama in 2012, shielded from deportation some 788,000 undocumented residents, including 230,000 in California, who were brought to the country as minors. It also awarded them legal work permits.

According to a 2011 study from the Public Policy Institute of California, the counties of Monterey and San Benito have the highest percentage of undocumented residents per county in the state.