Hope for Dreamers: DHS Outlines Deferred Action Process

The Department of Homeland Security today provided additional information on the deferred action for childhood arrivals process during a national media call in preparation for the August 15 implementation date.

Visit www.uscis.gov/avoidscams for tips on filing forms, reporting scams and finding accredited legal services. Remember, the Wrong Help Can Hurt! An informational brochure and flyer are also available on www.uscis.gov.

A recent Immigration Policy Center (IPC) report, Who and Where the DREAMers Are: A Demographic Profile of Immigrants Who Might Benefit from the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action Initiative, provides the most detailed look to date at who is likely to benefit from the new program and where they are located in the country.

The IPC estimates that roughly 936,930 undocumented youth between the ages of 15 and 30 might immediately qualify to apply for the new program. The new report breaks down the deferred action-eligible population by nationality and age at the national and state level, as well as by congressional district.

Most of the potential beneficiaries of deferred action live in large immigrant-receiving states likeCaliforniaandTexas, but many also reside inNorth Carolina,Georgia,Colorado, andWashingtonState, and nearly every state has a significant DREAMer population.

Also, while nearly 70 percent of potential beneficiaries are fromMexico, there are significant populations from Central America, South America, the Caribbean, andAsia. In some states, such asVirginia, the population is quite diverse, with no single dominant nationality.

Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-IL), Chairman of the Immigration Task Force of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, was briefed by USCIS on the process for DREAM Act eligible youth to apply on August 15 for deferred action, a two-year work permit and protections from deportation.

The guidelines spell out the fees ($465.00) which will pay for the program in its entirety and include further clarification on who will qualify and not qualify for the review and deferred action.

“I know $465 is a significant chunk of money for most families, teenagers, and young adults, but relief from the constant fear of deportation and having your family split apart is priceless,” said Gutierrez.

Please visit for help and mor information the website www.DREAMRelief.org.

Reactions:

Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum:

“We are heartened by DHS’s inclusion of confidentiality protections in the deferred action process. This will help quell concerns among eligible DREAMers that their request for deferred action might put their undocumented parents or siblings at risk of deportation”.

Angelica Salas, CHIRLA’s Executive Director:

“We appreciate Director Mayorca’s emphasis on making confidentiality a robust part of this process and we look forward to encouraging potential applicants to apply without fear.”

Cesar Vargas, undocumented youth and managing director of DRM Capitol Group:

“Of course, the administrative directive is just the first step and we will keep pressuring both Democrats and Republicans to ensure a modern immigration process is enacted next year.”

Lynn Tramonte, Deputy Director atAmerica’s Voice Education Fund:

“There’s a lot of excitement around this announcement from DHS because the pieces are falling into place.  In less than two weeks, thousands of young immigrants will begin requesting ‘deferred action’ and the right to work legally in the only country they know as home”.

Don Lyster, the National Immigration Law Center’s DC director:

“Do NOT allow yourself to become a victim of notario fraud: no one can request deferred action until August 15. Any claims made otherwise are false.

LeithAnderson, President of the National Association of Evangelicals:

“While not a permanent solution, this is an important step for many young people in our communities. Many of the individuals who will benefit from this program are beloved members of our churches, whom we have known since they were children.”

Reverend Luis Cortés, Jr., President, Esperanza:

“Please be sure to get qualified legal assistance from BIA accredited representative or an immigration attorney. Please remember Notarios in theUnited Statesare not qualified for this work and we should avoid them representing and charging for immigration services.”

Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, President, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference:

“We affirm the process outlined yet we also encourage churches and faith leaders to walk with our youth and assist in addressing legal and financial concerns.”

The Rev. Gabriel Salguero, President, National Latino Evangelical Coalition:

“We are praying that our government leaders, both Republican and Democrat, would roll up their sleeves and move to real solutions.”

Jim Wallis, President and CEO of Sojourners:

“Hope is not often the result of political decisions inWashington. But, the Obama Administration’s recent decision to defer action against undocumented young people who came to this country as children with their parents is one of the most hopeful government actions in many years”

Robert Gittelson, Co-Founder, Conservatives for Comprehensive Immigration Reform:

“The final answer to all of our prayers will be a final, full and complete, comprehensive legislative solution. Our coalition will not rest until that day comes to pass. We pray that date comes soon”.

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