Amid Legal and Political Uncertainty, DACA Remains More Important Than Ever

Publication date: 
August 2018
Amid Legal and Political Uncertainty, DACA Remains More Important Than Ever

Since it was first announced on June 15, 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy has provided work authorization as well as temporary relief from deportation to approximately 822,000 undocumented young people across the United States.

From July 16 to August 7, 2018, Tom K. Wong of the University of California, San Diego; United We Dream; the National Immigration Law Center; and the Center for American Progress fielded a national survey to further analyze the experiences of DACA recipients. The study includes 1,050 DACA recipients in 41 states as well as the District of Columbia. This research, as with previous surveys, shows that DACA recipients are making significant contributions to the economy and their communities. In all, 96 percent of respondents are currently employed or enrolled in school.

However, the data also show how the uncertainty that the Trump administration’s September decision to rescind DACA created is taking a significant toll on many DACA recipients’ well-being. A majority of respondents reported that they think about being deported at least once a day. Among parents, 76 percent reported that they think about “being separated from [their] children because of deportation” at least once a day, and 74 percent think about “not being able to see [their] children grow up because of deportation” at least once a day.

Included is a one page infographic summarizing the findings of the survey.