The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), also was formed through executive order by former President Barack Obama in 2012 and allows certain people, called Dreamers, who come to the United States illegally as minors to be protected from immediate deportation. Recipients are able to request “consideration of deferred action” for a period of two years which is subject to renewal.
DACA was created by the Obama administration after Congress failed to pass the DREAM act which stands for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act. DREAM would have offered those who came to the U.S. illegally as children the opportunity to potentially gain permanent legal residency.
Nearly 800,000 undocumented youth benefit from this program. Thousands of undocumented Dreamers could lose their jobs should the Trump administration decide to remove the DACA program.
New applications under DACA will no longer be accepted. For those currently in the program, their legal status and other DACA- related permits will begin expiring in March 2018. Unless congress passes legislation allowing a new channel for temporary or permanent legal immigration status, Dreamers will all lose their status by March 2020. As their statuses lapse, they could be deported and sent back to their countries of birth which many are not familiar with.
Elektra B. Yao is a multilingual Immigration Attorney and the owner of The Law Office of Elektra B. Yao. You can contact her at (917)587-9189 and at Elektra@yaofirm.com. Please visit her website at www.yaofirm.com