The President has announced that he will phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. ICIRR, its members and allies are committed to fight to protect those at risk of deportation, and to ensure protection for all. Below please find information about what we know and what's next in the fight for PROTECTION FOR ALL!
On September 5, 2017, the Trump Administration announced that it is rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The Obama Administration launched DACA in 2012 to protect immigrants who came to the United States as children from deportation and to allow them to work, continue with their educations, and move forward with their lives. An estimated 800,000 immigrants have benefited from DACA, including 42,000 in Illinois.
What the announcement says
After September 5, 2017, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is no longer accepting new applications for DACA. In other words, immigrants who never applied for DACA or are newly qualifying for DACA are no longer able to apply.
Immigrants who currently have DACA will continue to be protected by DACA.
- Those whose DACA expires between September 5, 2017, and March 5, 2018, will be able to renew their DACA for two years, but only if USCIS receives their application on or before October 5, 2017. (It is not clear whether immigrants whose DACA expired before September 5, 2017, but had not yet applied for renewals can still apply.)
- Those whose DACA expires after March 5, 2018, will not be able to renew.
USCIS will no longer approve applications for advance parole, which allows DACA recipients and others to travel outside the US and return. This applies to advance parole applications that have already been filed and are pending with USCIS. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) might still honor advance paroles that have already been issued, either to DACA recipients who are currently outside the US or those who had planned to travel but had not yet left the US. However, DHS still has the authority to determine whom it allows into the US, and USCIS has the authority to cancel an advance parole.
The DHS FAQ on DACA can be found here.
Impact on work, Social Security Numbers, and Illinois driver's licenses
- You have the right to work legally until your work permit’s expiration date.
- You have no obligation to inform your employer that you benefit from DACA. Your employer does not have the right to ask you whether you are a DACA recipient or how you got your work permit.
- Your employer does not have the right to fire you, put you on leave, or change your work status until after your work permit has expired. If your expiration date is nearing, your employer may ask you for an updated work permit but cannot take any action against you until after it is expired.
- Your Social Security Number is valid for life, even after your work permit and DACA approval expires. You can and should continue to use the SSN you got under DACA as your SSN even after your work permit expires. You can use your SSN for taxes, education, banking, housing and other purposes.
- In Illinois, immigrants can get regular driver’s licenses if they have can provide SSNs and are currently eligible for an SSN. So long as your work permit is valid, you will be eligible for an SSN and therefore eligible for a regular license. Under new Illinois laws that took effect in 2016 and 2017, anyone applying for an initial regular driver’s license now must provide proof of immigration status. Any such licenses will expire on the same date that the applicant’s status or work permit expires. In other words, if you have DACA and an SSN and you are applying for a license for the first time, you can get a regular license, but that license will expire on the same date as your work permit.
- After your work permit ends, you can apply for a Temporary Visitor Driver’s License (TVDL), which will be valid for three years. TVDLs are visually distinct from regular licenses and are not valid for identification purposes. For more information on TVDLs, please visit the Illinois Secretary of State’s website, http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/drivers/TVDL/home.html.
You can watch our Facebook townhall on DACA here.
Please visit our Events page for a listing of upcoming DACA information sessions and workshops.
Please visit our Protection page for links to legal, mental health, and other community resources.
You can text "DACA" to (630) 524-4106 to get more information regarding legal and community resources near you.
Our Family Support Hotline is available to provide information, referrals, and live responses to deportation-related crises, including consultations with mental health professionals: 855-HELP-MY-FAMILY (855) 435-7693.
ICIRR is working with directly affected individuals, allies, and program partners to plan information sessions and workshops to assist individuals who can and want to renew their DACA. We are also planning outreach to members of Congress to push for legislation that will offer protection for all immigrants who are subject to deportation. To get involved, please sign up below.