At FreelanceMyWay, we are proud to work with freelancing professionals from all over the world. These freelancers draw from their unique cultures and background to deliver out-of-the-box solutions you won’t find anywhere else, and the value that they offer to the businesses who work with them cannot be overstated.
With this said, we wanted to take the time to discuss an important issue that affects many in our freelancing community: DACA.
If you’re aware of all the controversy and concerns surrounding DACA and the Dreamers it protects but aren’t sure about the specifics of the issue, consider this a guide to what everyone needs to know about this vitally important matter.
What is DACA?
DACA is a program that was introduced by President Obama in 2012 as a way to shield immigrants who were brought into the country illegally as children from deportation. Participating in the DACA program has not only allowed these individuals -known as Dreamers – to avoid worrying about deportation, it has also allowed them to obtain work permits, receive health insurance through their employers, and, in some states, obtain a driver’s license.
Since its introduction, DACA is a program that many young immigrants have taken full advantage of. It has allowed them to pursue higher education in the United States, start their careers, and have access to loans that they can use to buy housing or even start a business. In fact, 5% of the 690,000 young adults protected by DACA have gone on to start their own business in the United States.
To qualify for DACA, participants must have been under the age of 16 when they were brought into the United States, and they must have not been older than 30 at the time that DACA was enacted by the Department of Homeland Security in 2012. DACA applicants must either be attending school, have a high school diploma, or be a military veteran, and they must also have a mostly clean criminal record.
Why is DACA Important?
For most DACA recipients, life in the United States is the only life they have ever known. Many of them left their home country at such a young age that they may not even have any memories of the place they came from.
Without DACA, these young adults are at risk of being sent back to a country that is just as foreign to them as it would be to someone who has never even visited it before. Even if they are not deported, without DACA, young adults who were brought into the country under no choice of their own would be unable to find legal employment, unable to go to school, unable to acquire health insurance, unable to access loans to buy houses and start businesses, and more.
The 690,000 individuals who are protected under DACA are Americans in every sense except the location that they were born. Like all Americans, they strive for the dreams and rights that have made this country so great, and DACA has allowed them to pursue those things in a way that is legal and beneficial to our country.
Unfortunately, DACA is now at risk. Rather than using executive power to renew DACA, the Trump administration has left it to Congress to come up with a permanent legislative solution for the Dreamers. As the end of the DACA program looms closer, though, with no permanent solution on the horizon, many DACA participants are left to worry that they might not be able to legally remain in the nation that they have called home all their life.
What You Can Do
The issues surrounding DACA and the Dreamers are ones that affect all Americans, not just immigrants. This is a chance for us to define what kind of nation we want to be: one that protects the youth of our country and offers them a shot at the American dream or one that rips them from their homes and forces them to relocate to a country they’ve never known.
If you would like to do your part to ensure that these Dreamers can continue having access to the rights and protections that have allowed them to start businesses, earn diplomas and degrees, and contribute to what makes our nation great, we urge you to contact your representatives in Congress and tell them that you want DACA reinstated for good. The fate of 690,000 young adults is resting on what we the people demand out of our government.