For progressive causes, many activists look to the state of California to see how to further implement progressive reforms or policies on a statewide level. It has yet to disappoint liberals and progressives, especially with the recent bill signed into law by California’s governor Gavin Newsom, a Democrat.
Newsom signed a bill into law that required California’s community colleges and the state university system, known as the California State University system, to create a position at their higher education institutions to help Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students on their campuses. The position would be called a “Dreamer Resource Liaison,” referring to the DACA recipients’ nickname, “Dreamers.”
The nickname originated from a proposed act in Congress which aimed to legalize DACA recipients.
Despite the intentions of the new law, colleges pointed out that the law will require more funding for the proposed liaison positions. The vice-chancellor of government relations for the California community colleges, Laura Metune, said the colleges do not have the funding necessary to create the positions and estimated it could cost at least $2.9 million to implement.
Currently, nineteen community colleges out of one hundred fifteen total colleges meet the requirement, meaning that the remaining ninety-six colleges in the community college system will have to comply with the new law by the 2020-2021 academic year. Regarding four-year institutions, the University of California system will not have issues as they already have liaisons and resource centers for DACA recipients, but four colleges in the California State University system will need to comply with the new law.
California is a sterling example of a state where American taxpayers fund positions or programs that do not directly benefit the taxpayer. DACA recipients are legal immigrants to the United States, although their fate is in limbo in the courts, the state of California appeared to give preference to immigrants over American residents and citizens.