The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), is a policy that protects around 800,000 young people known as “Dreamers”, who entered the United States unlawfully as children. The program does not grant them legal permanent resident status or a pathway to citizenship, but it does allow them to apply for a driver’s license, social security number, and work permit. President Barack Obama announced DACA on June 15, 2012. The Trump administration has repeatedly tried to eliminate DACA.
Currently, the U.S. government is accepting new DACA applications pursuant to a United States District Court order issued on December 7, 2020. President-Elect Joe Biden has vowed to reinstate the program during his first 100 days in office. He is likely to attempt to expand the legal protections of DACA recipients. The President-Elect has repeatedly expressed interest in creating a path to citizenship for undocumented residents and extending DACA to parents of those already enrolled in the program.
According to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an applicant can request DACA if he or she: