Congress Must Ensure a Permanent Solution for Dreamers

July 16, 2021

WASHINGTON— Today, U.S. Judge Andrew Hanen of the Southern District of Texas ordered the Biden administration to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a critical initiative that has offered deportation protection and work authorization to hundreds of thousands of young people who arrived in the United States as children.

Hanen struck down the DACA program, ruling that the creation of the program was unlawful and ordered the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to suspend approvals of new requests. Hanen did not at this time order DHS to revoke deferred action from current DACA recipients or stop issuing renewals. The Court’s decision means that over 50,000 new DACA applicants who have applied since January 2021 will not be allowed to obtain protection, and that hundreds of thousands of young people in the United States who have DACA will be placed in further limbo.

The following statement is from Jorge Loweree, policy director of at the American Immigration Council:

"Over the last 9 years, DACA has helped over 800,000 undocumented youth achieve some measure of peace and security in their lives. DACA recipients are crucial members of our workforce and our communities. But DACA has become politicized in an endless war on undocumented immigrants in the United States, and today’s decision will throw their lives—and the lives of tens of thousands of new applicants—into turmoil.

“Despite the fact that the legality of DACA has already been settled by multiple courts, Judge Hanen has now done what the Trump administration tried unsuccessfully for years. Congress has a unique opportunity to finally do what is right, not just for DACAmented youth, but also for the millions of people who have been forced to live in the shadows for far too long. The time is now."

The American Immigration Council has a range of research and other resources on DACA, including policy experts available to speak on policies designed to protect Dreamers and what is at stake for over 650,000 DACA beneficiaries across the country. The Council also has data on demographic and economic contributions of DACA recipients in each U.S. state and nationwide



For more information, contact: 

Maria Frausto at the American Immigration Council, [email protected] or 202-507-7526.

Media Contact

Elyssa Pachico
[email protected]

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