Will 2018 Bring A Solution For DACA Participants?
The Trump administration announced the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in September. It was a major shock for the hundreds of thousands of undocumented youth who have received a temporary deferral of deportation thanks to the DACA program.
Since 2012 the program has allowed participants to legally work and attend school in the U.S. But after Oct. 5, 2017, applications for renewal were no longer accepted.
At the time of the announcement, The Show reached out to the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). They had advocated for the end of the DACA program, which they argued should not have existed in the first place.
“It wasn’t the fault of the American people, it wasn’t the fault of American laws. It was a conscious decision of parents to violate laws. And in every other area of law, without exception, we hold parents accountable for the consequences of their illegal decisions to their families and their children," said Ira Mehlman, a spokesperson with FAIR.
In 2018, DACA permits will continue to expire without renewal, and Congress will have a decision to make — what to do now that DACA is phasing out. The issue has seen bipartisan support, but Congress hasn’t come up with a new plan. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell even indicated that there’s no rush, since members have until March to officially act.
To learn more about the current momentum — or lack thereof — The Show’s Steve Goldstein spoke with Randy Capps, Director of Research for U.S. Programs at the Migration Policy Institute.
Later we also hear from Francisco Luna, a 27-year old DACA recipient who just renewed his status, which now expires in November 2019. Luna has been a paralegal and an organizer, and he joined The Show, along with Josh Nunez.
He owns Nunez and Associates Law Firm in Phoenix, which does immigration law. He represents a lot of "DREAMers" and DACA recipients. He also has employees and members of his family in the program.