The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

What Is DACA?

The government is set to run out of money if there is no deal on DACA; certain non-essential government services will stop at 11:59 PM (for a second time) on February 8, 2018 . The Republicans are saying they will extend DACA if the budget includes money for border protection. The Democrats are saying that they have a plan but the plan does not provide enough for further border security, it will continue chain migration, and allow for more refugees.  

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was an American immigration policy that allowed some individuals who entered the country as minors, and had either entered or remained in the country illegally, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and to be eligible for a work permit. As of 2017, approximately 800,000 individuals are enrolled in the program. This protection is to benefit children who came over illegally by their parents breaking the law. Out of the 800,000 most of them are no longer children.  These “Dreamers” as they are called range from 5 years old to 36 years old. 

  • Twenty-nine percent are 16-20 years old; 

  • Thirty-seven percent are 21 years old to 25 years old;

  • Twenty-four percent are 26 to 30 years old;

  • Those who are 31-36 years old are eleven percent, 

  • While under 16 counts from less than 1 percent;

  • Up to forty-nine percent of DACA recipients have a high school education;

  • The Center for Immigration Studies estimates that “perhaps 24 percent of the DACA-eligible population fall into the functionally illiterate category ";

  • Another 46 percent have only ‘basic’ English ability;

To be enrolled in DACA the individuals must meet certain restrictions, these are the conditions;

  • Were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
  • Arrived in the USA before the 16th birthday;
  • Must have gone to school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States;
  • 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.

While living here under the DACA program the recipients get;

  • Free public high-school education;
  • Federal Financial Aid if they go to college;
  • Medicaid, or Medicare or Healthcare; (if eligible)
  • Food Stamps; (if eligible)
  • Housing Choice Housing or Public Housing; (if eligible)
  • Ability to apply for and get credit cards;
  • Ability to learn to drive and get your driver's license; (depending on state)
  • Ability to apply for Social Security Numbers;
  • They can claim EIC on their taxes;
  • They can vote in general elections;
  • They can own property and vehicles;

Those in DACA do not have to have proof that they work and if they break the law other than a misdemeanors they can be deported but most of them just come back. There is a $495 fee but that can be deferred in you can prove you live in poverty. The incarceration rate of DACA in prison is about 8000 or 10%.

If you were to go to Mexico and you want to live there, the government does not allow you to own property unless you are a citizen, however illegal aliens can own property in the US even if they are not naturalized or American.

The questions remains, is DACA amnesty? 

The answer is a resounding yes because any other person who comes here legally and which to become a citizen needs to wait and apply for citizenship, they need to pay for schooling to learn English and American history and when it is said and done it can be as much as $5000.00 although the Application for Naturalization costs $725 (updated-2018). This includes the $640 citizenship application fees and the $85 background check cost, also known as the biometric fee.  If these DACA recipients can afford the $495 fee and afford to own property, why not apply for citizenship, they've already been here more than five years.

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