Ascension President and Chief Executive Officer Anthony R. Tersigni, EdD, FACHE, is urging Congress to develop and pass a permanent solution that extends protections for those impacted by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

In an opinion column for Modern Healthcare, Tony says the rescission of DACA does not reflect a generosity of spirit, particularly for those in need.

“As healthcare leaders, we are called to promote and advance the dignity of every human person. Ascension's mission specifically calls us to be ‘advocates for a compassionate and just society through our actions and our words,’” he says.

According to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, more than 780,000 youth have received DACA protection since its inception by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in 2012.

“We stand in solidarity with the bishops, who have called for the administration ‘to continue administering the DACA program and to publicly ensure that DACA youth are not priorities for deportation,’” Tony says.

“Ascension’s concern about the cancellation of DACA is consistent with our ongoing passionate advocacy for a transformed healthcare system,” he says. “We reiterate that now is the time for Republicans and Democrats to reach across the aisle and work together on our nation’s complex challenges – whether it’s finding an expeditious means of protection for DACA youth or fixing the very real problems that plague the American healthcare system and those who rely on it for their care. Both issues need to be immediately addressed by Congress, and neither issue will be resolved on a partisan basis.”

Click here for the full column.