The Center For American Progress recently had an article titled: “A Demographic Profile of DACA Recipients on the Frontlines of the Coronavirus Response”.
The article states that there are over 200,000 DACA recipients who are on the front line helping America in the battle against Covid-19. These workers include medical doctors, nurses, teachers, and workers in the food industry among others. This does not count the workers who are in the United States undocumented (including those working in the fields to help feed America during this crises).
The DACA program began in the United States 2012 under President Obama’s administration.
According to USCIS: In order to qualify for the program a given applicant had to show the following: the person came to the U.S. under the age of 16; the person completed high school or that the person had a GED, or that the person was enrolled in school or that they had been honorably discharged from the U.S. military; the applicant could not have been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanors, or three or more other misdemeanors; under 31 years old on June 15, 2012; had continuously resided in the U.S. from June 15, 2007; had entered the U.S. without being inspected before June 15, 2012; and were physically present in the US on June 15, 2012 and at the time of making the DACA request with USCIS.
Once DACA started in 2012 I began to have interviews with young people who were interested in the program. These young people, although older, reminded me a lot of my own American born children.
The reason they did because they could have easily gone to school, played sports, and been friends with them. They had basically grown up in the United States and were fully assimilated. Our great country had educated them and had helped them grow into productive citizens. These wonderful potential DACA recipients were, for all intents and purposes, American.
It was time for these young people to be able to work and give back to the United States. This is what they wanted. My office was very happy to help these young people be able to work, continue their educations, and obtain their drivers licenses.
Now, as stated above, many DACA recipients are now able to give back to their country at one of its greatest time of need.
In 2017 the Trump administration was able to partially end the DACA program. Currently the DACA program is not available to new applicants. Only those who have previously filed for DACA can apply for renewals. USCIS is not accepting applications for first time applicants.
There is a current case pending concerning the DACA program before the United States Supreme Court.
Meanwhile DACA recipients continue to risk their lives for the United States. Our country is stronger with the help of those DACA recipients, on the front lines, in our collective battle against Covid 19.
Lawrence Gruner is an immigration attorney located in downtown Sacramento. His office handles family based immigration cases including fiance visa cases, permanent resident cases and U.S. Citizenship cases. His office handles cases in California, the United States and throughout the World. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org