Arizona native Raul Alcaraz; Lizbeth Mateo of Los Angeles, California; Tania Unzueta of Chicago, Illinois; Mohammad Abdollahi of Ann Arbor, Michigan; and Yahaira Carrillo of Kansas City, Missouri; were detained Tucson, Arizona, after staging a sit-in at US Sen. John McCain’s office on May 17, 2010, in support of the DREAM Act.

I write to bring attention and action to the plight of 750,000 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients living in the United States. These “Dreamers” are living in fear over losing their granted legal status to work and study in our great nation.

If that occurs, these young people would immediately lose their jobs and face imminent deportation. Further, they were brought here before the age of 16 and have gone through a strict application process to receive relief and work authorization under DACA. I believe Republicans and Democrats alike must come together to provide these young people the certainty that they need and deserve.

In response to their calls, and the calls of countless others, a bipartisan group of federal lawmakers, headed by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Illinois), re-introduced the DREAM Act to assure these people that they can continue to be an integral part of our society, won’t lose their livelihoods and won’t face deportation.

As a man of faith, the striking moral issues involved with Dreamers are significant to analyze. First, what would it say about our nation if we failed to find a solution and forced 750,000 people to leave the only nation they know as home? What lesson would we be teaching our children if we turned our backs on these innocent souls?

It is impossible to justify kicking out Dreamers who were brought to this nation through no fault of their own because their parents wanted to give them the best possible chance in life.

Dreamers are our neighbors, co-workers and worship beside us. We must come together to treat these people not just as we would want to be treated, but more importantly how we would want our children to be treated. As the moral leader of the world, the U.S. must continue to do right by all of our people and allow these Dreamers the same opportunities.

The DREAM Act is the moral and responsible solution to this difficult issue. This legislation allows Dreamers to remain in this great nation only after they pay a significant administrative fee that covers the costs for an extensive background check to insure no bad actors can misuse this program to take advantage of our generosity and compassion.

Beyond the obvious cost savings from this legislation, the DREAM Act allows Dreamers to continue their significant tax contributions through income tax, Social Security tax, Medicare taxes and many more. Dreamers, just like all other Americans, work and contribute to our economy. The deportation of Dreamers would result in an estimated loss of $280 billion to our economy.

Passage of the DREAM Act is the responsible and moral solution to a problem that terrifies Dreamers every day. We must not allow these good people, our friends and neighbors, to continue to live in fear. Our representatives must answer the calls from President Donald Trump and Speaker Paul Ryan to find a solution that everyone can get behind. We can and we must solve this problem.

The Rev. Joseph Alsay became rector at St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church in July of 2010. He attended Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee and later Phillips Theological Seminary in Tulsa. He obtained a master of divinity degree at Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago, Illinois.