Here you will find information about ongoing developments in immigration law and activism for the DREAM Act.
Post-election message to DACA recipients
After the presidential election, DACA recipients are wondering what will happen once Trump takes office. It is a very difficult situation. Trump has pledged to end DACA and he can do that with the stroke of a pen.
We find it hard to believe that he will suddenly revoke work cards and DACA from 750,000 high achieving students. Perhaps more likely is that he could stop DACA extensions. Moving to deport these students would be another radical step - if they just lose their DACA status, that would be awful, but we can advise them as we did pre-DACA.
Guidance & resources
- We are encouraging DACA students to apply for renewal at the earliest possible moment - see the calculator at http://e4fc.org/legalservices/deferredactionresources.html.
- Here are some tips if DACA is delayed to get it approved as soon as possible given current long processing delays - https://www.nilc.org/issues/daca/steps-take-daca-renewal-delayed/. Please understand that a DACA renewal may not be approved before Trump takes office, and that based on current processing times, the DACA renewal may not work. More excellent analysis is at https://www.nilc.org/issues/daca/daca-after-trump-q-and-a/.
- It is also a good time for everyone to consider if they have any longer term immigration options - http://e4fc.org/resources/legalremedies.html.
- Regarding study abroad after the inauguration, that is a concern. Although we do not think President Trump will withdraw DACA status suddenly, he will have the power to do that, and if it happened while the student was abroad, it would be catastrophic. On the other hand, if DACA is not extended, then next semester (during the current grant of DACA) maybe the student's last chance. For now, we would advise DACA students to explain the uncertainty of their status to a study abroad program, and only sign up if they can back out at the last minute, once we see more about what happens in the first 100 days.
- We would recommend that current study abroad students return before the inauguration. And we encourage you to share these Know Your Rights links - https://www.nilc.org/KnowYourRights. The Spanish version is here - https://www.nilc.org/issues/immigration-enforcement/todos-tienen-derechos-basicos/.
And it goes without saying, but advocacy efforts are more important now than ever. Here are links for information and referrals to advocacy opportunities - http://americasvoice.org/, and https://www.weownthedream.org/.
NY state follows Florida, California in allowing DACA recipients to practice law
A NY state appeals court has ruled that a DACA recipient may practice law in that state. The New York ruling follows earlier rulings by courts in California and Florida. Excerpt: “Cesar Vargas, a Mexican-born New Yorker, became the first immigrant in the state without legal status to be approved to work as a lawyer after an appellate court granted his application to the bar.”
Read the coverage in the NY Times article here: New York Court Rules for Immigrant in Fight to Become Lawyer.
ILRC updates "Living in the United States: A Guide for Immigrant Youth"
The ILRC has updated their guide "Living in the United States: A Guide for Immigrant Youth." This guide provides information regarding the rights and responsibilities of immigrant youth living in the United States, including undocumented youth and youth with legal status. Available in English and Spanish.
The guide contains a compilation of information including a summary of immigration relief, advice on applying for benefits, driver’s licenses, financial aid for college, bank accounts and credit cards, filing taxes, guarding against immigration scams, and more. It also includes know your rights information for interacting with immigration authorities.
The Atlantic: "A Catch for Undocumented Immigrants in Recent Reforms"
Attorney Dan Berger was recently quoted in this article inThe Atlantic, which highlights some of the complications faced by individuals that qualify for DACA but have trouble proving it. Titled "A Catch for Undocumented Immigrations in Recent Reforms," the article explores how many undocumented individuals took a "leave no trace" attitude to documenting their lives due to their undocumented status. Now, they struggle to meet one of the most stringent of DACA requirements - the ability to prove continued presence in the US prior to the passing of DACA.
PHD (Pre-Health DREAMers) launches new website
DREAMers who want to enter the medical profession face special challenges. PHD (Pre-Health DREAMers) is an online community created to unite Dreamers with this goal so they can share beneficial information and get connected.
PHD has just launched a new website, which features an FAQ, a listserve, and other great information for those interested in the medical field.