DACA: A new update


Alexis Rodriguez-Mejia

“We love our Dreamers” artwork displayed at the Johnson Center.

Alexis Rodriguez-Mejia, Co-Editor-in-Chief

After the Trump Administration attempted to end DACA on September 5, 2017, many people assumed it was gone. However, contrary to popular belief, DACA is still hanging on and fighting to survive. Click here for more information on DACA.

A DACA recipient at Middle College High School said, “It’s [DACA] essentially a school and work visa, but you can’t leave the country. And the card doesn’t grant you access back to the United States of America.”

To give a brief overview, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was meant to protect eligible immigrant youth, who came to the United States when they were children, from deportation. Two of the main benefits that DACA gives its users are protection from deportation, and a work permit. The program expires after two years, but eligible candidates are allowed to apply for a renewal.

As one may recall, the Trump administration said last September that it was pulling the plug on DACA on March 5, 2018. This resulted in many protests happening around Washington, D.C. For many people, this date was coming too fast, and many feared it would be their last day here in America. Fortunately, the DACA deadline was not an end for the dreamer’s dream, but rather a source of hope.

Now, we are in May and that fateful date has passed with no resolution in sight. According to CNN, the deadline for DACA still exists on paper, but it’s become more of a symbolic marker for the roughly 700,000 DACA recipients.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has given an update as to the DACA Status. According to the USCIS website, “USCIS is not accepting requests from individuals who have never before been granted deferred action under DACA.” Unfortunately, this suggests that people who were applying for DACA, can no longer be accepted. However, the website goes on to add, “due to federal court orders on Jan. 9, 2018 and Feb. 13, 2018, USCIS has resumed accepting requests to renew a grant of deferred action under DACA.” In other words, the government is still looking for a substitution for DACA.

The same DACA recipient at MCHS mentioned, “I think that the future for DACA looks good. We got people out there protesting and fighting to keep DACA. As long as people keep fighting for it and as long as we keep trying, I believe it will be around for our children, and our children’s children.”

Despite what many people believe, that the courts have ordered DACA to stay, this isn’t completely true. Currently, the Ninth Circuit Court is still in the processes of hearing both arguments pertaining to DACA. (Click here to see the timeline of the events leading up to this trail.) Nonetheless, even if the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals favors DACA, there still is the possibility of this case making it to the Supreme Court of the United States. As you may or may not know, the Supreme Court of the United States is the most powerful court and more often than not has the final say in terms of the Judicial branch of government.

Currently, there is a movement to get Immigration bills voted on by the House of Representatives; this would include DACA. According to the House Clerk’s Office, a petition has been created for this movement. The measure needs 218 signatures to move forward, which would require at least 25 Republicans and all 193 Democrats currently in the House of Representatives. (Click here to see who has signed the DACA discharge petition)

Congressman Lou Correa of the forty-sixth congressional district comments on DACA, saying, “There is no resolution right now. The real issue currently is trying to get a bill on the congressional floor to vote on. There are probably five to six bills on DACA that have been written…but the leadership right now is not permitting anything on the floor.”