Pope Francis would like to see President Donald Trump rethink his decision to end the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for the sake of keeping families together and letting undocumented young people who came to the U.S. as minors live a normal life.
“One hopes that it is re-thought somewhat,” Francis said Sunday aboard the Papal plane in response to a question about the program, Reuters reported. “The President of the United States … presents himself as a man who is pro-life. If he is a good pro-lifer, he understands that the family is the cradle of life and you have to defend its unity.”
The pope said it is important for young people to have their “roots.”
“In the end, young people feel like they have no hope. And who robs them of hope? Drugs, other addictions, suicides — youth suicides are very high — and this happens when they are torn from their roots,” Francis said.
The remarks come after Trump decided to end DACA, a program instituted by former President Barack Obama that protects undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children from being deported. The program will end in six months, according to the attorney general, giving Congress time to create a legislative solution to the issue.
Trump has said if Congress can’t act in six months, he will “revisit” what to do with the program.
The pope’s remarks on Sunday are not the first time he’s questioned Trump on issues regarding immigration. Francis called Trump’s border wall plan “not Christian” during the President’s campaign.