As the Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments on DAPA and expanded DACA, a new study finds that undocumented immigrants eligible for the two programs — as well as young immigrants currently enrolled in DACA — are “deeply embedded” in American society, with familial ties and work histories that extend back for decades.
The study, conducted by the Center for Migration Studies, finds that a significant majority of potential DAPA and expanded DACA recipients have been in the United States for at least a decade — a quarter of potential DAPA recipients said 20 years or more — and have a history of steady employment and family ties to the United States.
Of DAPA-eligible undocumented immigrants:
- 89% are parents of US citizens only
- 7% have lawful permanent resident children only
- 4% have both US citizen and lawful permanent resident children
- 20% are married to a US citizen or legal non-citizen
DAPA and DACA recipients who have lived in the US for 10 years or more:
- DAPA: 81%
- Original DACA: 85%
- DACA-plus: 72%
DAPA and DACA recipients in the labor force that are employed:
- DAPA: 94%
- Original DACA: 89%
- DACA-plus: 90%
DAPA and DACA recipients who have at least a high school degree:
- DAPA: 47%
- Original DACA: 93%
- DACA-plus: 95%
DAPA and DACA recipients who speak English well, very well or exclusively:
- DAPA: 49%
- Original DACA: 91%
- DACA-plus: 83%
DAPA and DACA recipients with access to a computer and internet:
- DAPA: 68%
- Original DACA: 74%
- DACA-plus: 73%
Up to five million undocumented immigrants are estimated to be eligible for the President’s 2014 executive actions on immigration, which have been blocked due to a Republican-led lawsuit from Texas and 25 other states.
The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on the lawsuit in April, with a decision possible in late June. If allowed to go forward, the programs would allow immigrants to work legally, continue contributing to their local and state economies, and live free from the threat of deportation.
“The data in this report shows that these groups have built equities in our country,” said Donald Kerwin, CMS Executive Director and co-author of the report. “Giving them protection would not only enhance their ability to contribute to their communities, but would also keep families together.”