The Benefits of DACA

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Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (“DACA”) has provided many opportunities for individuals that need a work permit while they are in the United States. ¬†The program was started by President Obama in 2012 and continues to be an important part of our economy and educational system for a lot of young people that would otherwise not have the opportunity to advance in their studies or find work to take care of their families.

DACA came to fruition after efforts by the DREAM Movement influenced the expansion of opportunities for individuals that entered the United States as children and were not in control of the consequences that resulted from their method of entry or potential overstay of their visas.  President Obama and federal government recognized that the need to help these individuals would lead to benefit our county by providing them with an opportunity to obtain a work permit, continue with their studies and contribute to the U.S. economy.  Consequently, the DACA program was created and implemented on June 15, 2012.

To qualify for DACA, there are several requirements that a person applying must show to receive a work permit.  These include:

  1. You were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
  2. You came to the United States before your 16th birthday;
  3. You have continuously lived in the United States since June 15, 2007 to the present;
  4. You were physically in the United States on June 15, 2012;
  5. You had no lawful status on June 15, 2012;
  6. You are currently enrolled in school, graduated high school and received your diploma, got your GED certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the U.S.;
  7. Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

These requirements were specifically outlined to provide a temporary opportunity for members of our community that entered the United States before they were adults, had been here long enough to establish a foundation for themselves, were going to school or had¬†graduated high school, and who were not criminals and/or dangerous to our community. ¬†This program also assisted and continues to assist Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the agency responsible for the detention and deportation of undocumented individuals. ¬†ICE and the Department of Homeland Security realized that with their set budget, there was only so much that could be done in terms of deportation. ¬†So with DACA, ICE prioritized their resources to remove the most dangerous individuals and “defer their action” to those that posed no threat to our society and in fact contributed significantly to our communities.

The importance of DACA can not be understated.  The program benefits our country, our economy, our school systems, and even our immigration system.  It is important that we continue to find solutions that will help those that have grown to be our neighbors, friends, colleagues and partners, and loved ones.  DACA is one of those solutions and the continuation of this program in our country will not only benefit those that receive direct benefits, but also the school systems, employers, co-workers, and economy that benefits from diverse businesses, diverse backgrounds, and diverse points of view.

 

If you would like to know more about DACA, please contact us for more information.

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