The Donald Trump administration recently announced it will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an outrageous decision that will strip status and work permits away from nearly 800,000 productive members of our society. The labor movement strongly condemns these efforts to criminalize young working people and will work tirelessly to defend and extend these important protections. While we continue to push Congress and the administration, there are some important things that you need to know if you or a family member, co-worker, neighbor or friend have DACA:
- If your DACA status expires before March 5, 2018, you can still apply to renew for another two years. However, the deadline for renewal applications is Oct. 5, 2017, so it is essential that you begin the process right away. Your union can help you find support to prepare your application and may be able to lend assistance in raising funds to pay the application fee, so reach out immediately if you are in need of help. Please note that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services must receive your application by Oct. 5–a postmark on that date will be too late.
- If your DACA status expires after March 5, 2018, you will maintain your status until the expiration date listed on your paperwork but will not have an opportunity to renew. In addition, you will no longer be given permission to travel abroad. If you already have been granted advance parole, please consult a lawyer before leaving the country.
Now is the time to join the fight to preserve and expand the protections of DACA. The DREAM Act of 2017 would not only ensure that DACA recipients maintain their work authorization, but would also afford them a long overdue pathway to citizenship. This bipartisan legislation would allow young men and women who are part of our workforce, serving in the military or pursuing higher education, to plan for the future and contribute more fully to our communities, our unions and our economy. When you contact your members of Congress to urge support for the DREAM Act, make sure you demand that they pass a clean bill without any punitive enforcement or anti-workers’ rights provisions.
Your union will be with you in this fight until all working people have rights on the job and in the community. In the meantime, please use and share this fact sheet that summarizes key details of the DACA announcement.