Trump Ends DACA: What Does It Mean for Students?
Is it really coming to an end? And what can you do?
By Kathryn Knight Randolph
September 05, 2017
On September 5, the Trump Administration announced the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, otherwise known as DACA, due to an oncoming legal battle with several Republican attorney generals. Instituted by President Barack Obama, DACA protected children who were brought into America illegally by their parents, allowing them to remain in the United States where they could attend school and gain employment.
Trump’s call to end the program is a huge blow to those individuals that willingly provided their name and contact information during the Obama administration in order to enroll in the program; and unfortunately, many of those individuals are college students and recent graduates. At the time the program was initiated, these were the requirements:
- Came to the United States before their 16th birthday.
- Have lived continuously in the U.S. since June 15, 2007.
- Were under age 31 on June 15, 2012.
- Were physically present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012 and at the time of bringing their case forward for DACA.
- Have no lawful status as of June 15, 2012.
- Have completed high school or GED, honorably discharged from the army or currently enrolled in school.
- Have not been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors.
Today, there are roughly 800,000 “Dreamers,” or individuals who have taken advantage of DACA. Most of them are high school or college educated, employed and contributing economically. In fact, the Center for American Progress reports that the U.S. could lose $460.3 billion from the national GDP if DACA truly ends.
As of the Trump’s administration announcement on Tuesday, applications for DACA will no longer be processed, according to CNN. Trump states that he is giving Congress six months to amend DACA through a democratic process and that the administration will continue to process renewals for current Dreamers during that time.
At this time, no one will be deported and no DACA status will be revoked, as reported by CNN. So what should Dreamers and supporters of DACA do in the meantime?
- Call your Congressional representatives. Voice your support for DACA recipients and an outcome that is beneficial to them.
- Do your research. Before you debate with those that oppose DACA, arm yourself with facts.
- Show up to peaceful marches and vote. You have a voice, and there are multiple ways to use it. So use it!
- Ask for support. DACA isn’t as controversial as some would make us all believe. According to The Atlantic, nearly 80% of Republicans and three-quarters of Trump supports actually support DACA. Therefore, it’s not hard to find support on this issue. Even better, big name companies are coming out in full support of their employees who may be DACA recipients, like Apple and Microsoft. USA Today reports that these two companies – the first of many, surely – will shield employees from legal battles and possible deportation.
- Defend Dreamers. DoSomething.org has a campaign called Defend Dreamers where they first ask people to post “Dreamers are welcome here” signs and then level them up to actually make calls to their senators! In only a few weeks, 88k young people signed up for defend dreamers, 3,400 phone calls were made to Congress and 200+ stories of dreamers from their members have been shared on social.
Later on Tuesday evening, Trump tweeted the following:
Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do). If they can't, I will revisit this issue!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 6, 2017
He also tweeted two days later that DACA recipients have nothing to be concerned about for the next six months. As of now, no action will be taken.
Ultimately, though new applications will not be processed at this time, the fate of DACA is certainly not sealed. Congress claims they will resolve issue in six months’ time, and Trump’s latest tweet indicates that he might not be willing to shut down the program after all. Only time will tell, and Fastweb will have any and all updates for students and recent graduates on solutions for DACA.
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