DACA Update – 2017 DREAM Act Legislation

Given the current rhetoric and policies concerning Immigration, we want to bring some clarity to the issue related to Dreamers, and call on you to take action.

On September 5, 2017, the Trump administration announced that they were rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy. DACA was established by an executive order from the Obama administration on June 15, 2012, which allowed certain individuals who meet certain guidelines to request deferred action from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This allowed people to stay in the U.S. for a specified period of time and receive work permits if eligible.

An Eligible DACA Recipient, Often Referred to as a Dreamer, Must:

  • Have come to the U.S. while under the age of 16.
  • Have continuously resided in the U.S. since June 15, 2007 up to the present time.
  • Have been under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.
  • Have never had a lawful immigration status on or before June 15, 2012 or lawful immigration status obtained expired as of June 15, 2012.
  • Be in school, have graduated or obtained their certificate of completion for high school, have obtained their GED certificate, or be an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States.
  • Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
  • Have been physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making their request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS.

Who Has the DREAM Act Helped?

DACA has provided almost 800,000 young undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children protection from deportation through work permits.

The Trump Administration has allowed Dreamers to apply for a two-year renewal if their documents expired before March 5, 2018. The deadline to do so was October 5, 2017. It is estimated that 318,000 Dreamers will lose their permits by January 2019.

There is a six-month delay in the implementation to rescind DACA, giving Congress a window of opportunity to find a lasting legislative solution to protect DACA recipients from losing work permits and deportation. DACA was easily rescinded by the Trump administration because it was established by an executive order. If Congress passes legislation to protect DACA recipients it would be permanent.

Meet The American Dreamers:

Hopefully the Trump administration takes into consideration all of our stories when they make a decision about the future.” – Miriam Santamaria, Houston, small business owner, Dreamer

Read the stories of other Dreamers like Miriam in this storywall by the New York Times.

Americans Support Dreamers:

A September 2017 Quinnipiac University Poll shows both Republicans and Democrats think Dreamers should be able to stay:

Bipartisan support for Dreamers

Get Involved

Protect the Dreamers by staying engaged and getting involved!

The United States is a nation of immigrants, and the League of Women Voters has a long history of encouraging their participation in American society. If you are interested in protecting Dreamers, consider joining the immigration committee and check for upcoming events related to this topic.