About DACA: The DACA program was established in 2012 as a temporary solution for millions of undocumented immigrants who have grown up in the United States but, due to Congress’s failure to pass a fair immigration reform bill, had no opportunity to legalize their immigration status. In the program’s five-year history, DACA provided a temporary work authorization and a reprieve from deportation to nearly 800,000 men and women who met the program’s stringent requirements. Because of DACA, individuals remained with and supported their families in the United States, completed their educations, launched careers, bought homes, and participated in society without fear that they may suddenly be exiled from the only home they have ever known. Despite the program’s strong and wide bi-partisan support, the current presidential administration announced on August 5, 2017 its decision to end DACA.

Graph: DACA Renewals and Projected Expirations Starting September 5, 2017

The Immigration Ministry of the Office for Human Dignity & Solidarity presents support materials for DACA beneficiaries, their families and allies.

DACA Recipients - What you need to know

Many of the details on how today’s announcement will take effect remain unclear. This is what the DHS Memorandum on Rescission of DACA sets forth: For those who already hold DACA

  1. Pastoral Migratoria will soon be hosting information sessions at local parishes. For immediate assistance/information contact Jose Torres at 312-534-8103 or jtorres@archchicago.org.

  2. Avoid scams and immigration legal help: Visit immi.org, a search engine that  works with legal aid organizations across the U.S. to connect immigrants to legal help.  Another resource is Illinois Legal Aid, it is a tool to guide you to the best available services based on your location or the location of your legal problem, your legal issue, and your income.

    DHS has also released Frequently Asked Questions: Rescission of DACA.

Allies - What can you do

  • Contact your members of Congress and tell them you support the bipartisan Dream Act: Senators Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) and Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) re-introduced the Dream Act of 2017 (S. 1615) in July. It would create a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers who meet certain requirements.    The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has endorsed this bill and calls upon the administration to ensure permanent protection for DACA youth.  Tell your Congressional representative to co-sponsor the Dream Act.

  • Tell the president to sign a stand-alone Dream Act:  White House officials indicated that the president would not sign the Dream Act unless he gets funding for a border wall. The administration also supports the RAISE Act (S. 354), which creates a merit-based system and limits future family immigration. The USCCB has strongly opposed the RAISE Act.   Contact the White House and tell the president that Dreamers will not be used as bargaining chips! Tell the president to commit to signing the Dream Act.

  •  Urge your governor to stand against this cruel act against Dreamers: 15 states and D.C. have filed a lawsuit to block the president’s plan to end DACA.   Contact your governor to express your support and urge him or her to defend the future of DACA youth in your state.   Don’t forget to tag them on social media using #DefendDACA

  • Call your state legislators and tell them to enact laws to protect young immigrants: Many states provide driver’s licenses, in-state tuition, and healthcare to DACA youth. Find your elected officials here and tell them to pass legislation that will allow Dreamers to keep those benefits.

  • Know the Facts: Removing the 685,000 DACA recipients from our workforce in a single day will cost $200 billion in lost GDP and $60 billion in lost tax revenue over a decade, and disrupts multibillion dollar industries like healthcare, technology, and finance, according to the CATO Institute. DACA recipients contribute an estimated $2 billion a year in state and local taxes, and are projected to contribute an additional $505 million if they are provided with an opportunity to earn citizenship through the DREAM Act, according to the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy. This program has been tremendously successful by any measure and perhaps this is why most Americans or 78% support (Survey April 2017) giving Dreamers the opportunity to stay in this country permanently.

  • In Defense of DACA: Talking points on the far-reaching benefits DACA has had on individuals, families and America as a whole [Link]

  • Side by Side: DACA and Related 2017 Legislation : The table below compares, in a general way, the DACA program and the bills the have been introduced in Congress, as they currently stand. [Link]

Pastoral response - How does the church accompany our immigrant sisters and brothers

Prayers and Intentions [Link]

USCCB: USCCB President, Vice President and Committee Chairmen Denounce Administration’s Decision to End DACA and Strongly Urge Congress to Find Legislative Solution [Link]

Justice for Immigrants Action Alert: Support the Dream Act, Contact your Legislators [Link]

Cardinal Blase Cupich: Statement of Cardinal Cupich on the Rescission of DACA [Link] [Español]

Ignatian Solidarity Network: 1,200+ Educators at Jesuit Institutions Join Effort to Defend DACA [Link]

Catholic Legal Immigration Network: Trump cancellation of DACA is a cruel, un-American act and undermines the rule of law [Link]