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Boston-Area Professors Are Arrested in Protest of Trump’s Move Against DACA

Some two dozen professors from Harvard and other universities in the Boston area were arrested on Thursday after they blocked traffic in Cambridge, Mass., to protest the Trump administration’s decision to rescind an Obama-era program that has protected thousands of young people from deportation because of their immigration status, The Harvard Crimson reported. Many of them are college students.

The program, known as Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals, allowed people who had been brought to the United States illegally as children to hold jobs or attend college with two-year renewable permits. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said on Tuesday that the program would be phased out over a six-month period, although Congress could enact legislation to provide similar protections to undocumented immigrants.

The Trump administration’s decision drew sharp and nearly unanimous criticism across academe, with faculty members, students, administrators, colleges, and academic associations issuing statements opposing the move. It remains unclear, however, what colleges might be able to do about the policy shift in the long run.

On Thursday in Cambridge, faculty members settled on an initial strategy of civil disobedience, according to Kirsten Weld, a history professor at Harvard, who spoke with the Crimson before she was arrested. Other professors in the protest were from Tufts University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the newspaper reported.

A police spokesman told the Crimson that the detained faculty members would be arraigned on Friday and released on $40 bail each.

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