What is Daca?
Daca (pronounced dah-kuh) is a federal government program created in 2012 under Barack Obama. It allowed people brought to the US unlawfully as children the temporary right legally to live, study and work in America, instead of living in the legal shadows, fearing deportation. Those applying were vetted, and then action to deport them would be deferred for two years, with a chance to renew on a rolling basis. And they would become eligible for basics like a driving license, college enrollment or a work permit. The program is not designed as a path to permanent residency or citizenship.
Who are the Dreamers?
Those protected under Daca are known as “Dreamers” – by the time Trump announced his decision to rescind the program, many hundreds of thousands had been granted approval. To apply, they must have been younger than 31 on 15 June 2012, when the program began, have arrived before the age of 16 and been “undocumented”, ie lacking legal immigration status. Most Dreamers are from Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.
What happens now?
The case before the supreme court hinged on whether the Trump administration followed proper procedure – not whether it could legally end Daca. The court agreed Trump has the power to end the program.
That leaves open the possibility that Trump could have another go at scrapping it, though it would be difficult to do before the November election – and largely unpopular with voters. So Daca survives, albeit still in limbo for now. Will it start back up again, allowing new applications?
If the program had been killed off, Dreamers faced the immediate threat of deportation to the countries where they were born but many have no familiarity with.
Joe Biden has pledged to make Daca permanent via legislation if he becomes president.
A survey of Black immigrant domestic workers in New York, Miami-Dade and Massachusetts found that 70% had lost their jobs amid the coronavirus pandemic.
A survey conducted by The Institute for Policy Studies and the National Domestic Workers Alliance includes responses from 800 workers.
Half of those surveyed said they were afraid of seeking assistance from the federal or local government due to their immigration status. Just as the pandemic hit the US, the Trump administration’s public charge rule, which allows the government to deny green cards and visas to immigrants who rely on public benefits, took effect.
A senior state department official has resigned over Donald Trump’s handling of racial tensions.
Mary Elizabeth Taylor, the assistant secretary of state for legislative affairs, submitted a resignation letter in which she said the president’s actions “cut sharply against my core values and convictions”, Washington Post reports.
Taylor, 30, is one of the highest-ranking African American leaders in the administration and had served since Trump first took office.
“Moments of upheaval can change you, shift the trajectory of your life, and mold your character. The President’s comments and actions surrounding racial injustice and Black Americans cut sharply against my core values and convictions,” she wrote in her resignation letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, which was obtained by the Post. “I must follow the dictates of my conscience and resign.”
What’s Biden’s immigration plan?
Following the supreme court’s decision on Daca, Joe Biden promised to create a roadmap to citizenship for Dreamers and 11 million undocumented people in the US “on day one” that he takes office.
The Democratic presidential candidate’s immigration platform seeks to distance Biden from policies enacted during Barack Obama’s first term, when deportations were sped up. But Biden’s plan is otherwise fairly moderate – offering a continuation of Obama-era policies that stop short of making the sorts of radical reform that immigration activists have demanded.
Biden doesn’t seek to decriminalize unauthorized entry into the US, or abolish Ice. Instead, the former vice-president also plans to refocus immigration authorities on ‘toward threats to public safety and national security” and otherwise relaxing enforcement.
His platform promises to reverse various Trump policies, including family separation and travel bans.