DACA: The things you cannot ignore


Cathleen Weng, Staff Writer

800,000 people are recipients of the protection of DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). This is a bill that the Trump administration plans to terminate.


This end of this bill will affect 800,000 people, real life people that should have actual human rights that have been reduced to just statistics.


According to the website for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the requirements to receive DACA include: the need to be currently enrolled in school, having graduated from high-school, having received a GED or have been honorably discharged from the military. DACA applicants must “not pose a threat to national security or public safety.”


Consider this: your parents wake you up and tell you that you’re moving to the other side of the U.S. You will have to leave behind your friends, the life you’ve built and everything that you know. You have no choice. DACA protects high-school students, college students and people with jobs that they have worked hard to acquire. DACA might not be a permanent solution; it provides protection for only two years, at which point a recipient can apply for it to be renewed, but it provides a sense of safety to young undocumented immigrants. Without it, they cannot get a driver’s license or apply for college and will either be sent to an unfamiliar place that is not necessarily safe for them, or live in constant fear of deportation.


According to Mundo Immigration, it costs the U.S. $13 thousand to deport one person. Deporting all 800,000 immigrants protected by DACA would cost $10.4 billion. Additionally, the Department of Homeland Security “spends more than 5 million dollars a day detaining people awaiting immigration trials.”


On the surface, it may seem like illegal immigrants are taking jobs that could be given to people born in the U.S., but it goes far deeper than that. Like with all laws, this is a complex issue. Those born in the U.S. could lose jobs to DACA recipients – a survey of economists from 2013 concluded that more low-skilled foreign workers in the U.S. could be bad news for low-skilled workers already in the U.S. However, most of the economists also concluded that there would be an advantage for the economy as a whole.


According to Fortune Insiders,economists John McLaren and Gihoon Hong… found that every immigrant to the U.S. creates 1.2 new jobs—almost all going to U.S. citizens.”


A poll of economists’ thoughts of highly skilled immigration concluded that 95 percent of economists thought the average American would be better off with more immigrants. DACA provides the ability for more young immigrants to seek higher education, meaning their salaries, and therefore the amount they pay in taxes, will rise. With higher salaries, they will also spend their paychecks and consume more, which will help the economy.


In addition, the cost of firing undocumented immigrants already in jobs and hiring new employees to replace them could sing to the tune of $61 million, according to immigration policy analyst David Bier.


According to the Washington Post, “Multiple polls have shown that about two-thirds of Americans, including Republicans and Trump supporters, favor protecting “dreamers” in some form.”


Because DACA is a high-up governmental law, there may not seem to be much hope for changing the Congress’ opinion on it, but petitioning and speaking out against it  are always an option and, at the very least, trying to change the way you and other people think about DACA recipients.