NAME: Itzel Guillen
BIRTHPLACE: Mexico City
CURRENT RESIDENCE: San Diego
BACKGROUND: Arrived in San Diego when she was 4 years old with an imposter identification card that was presented to a border inspector. Graduated from Patrick Henry High School in San Diego this year and plans to study psychology at San Diego State University this fall. Plans to apply for temporary status as early as this week.
QUOTE: "Even though it's temporary and there might be risks, I'm willing to try. I would like to encourage people take a risk as well. If we didn't take risks, we would all regret it."
NAME: Carolina Valdivia
BIRTHPLACE: Mexicali, Mexico.
CURRENT RESIDENCE: Escondido, Calif.
BACKGROUND: Arrived in the San Diego when she was 12 years old and overstayed a tourist visa. Graduated from Orange Glen High School in Escondido, Calif., and California State University, San Marcos with degrees in sociology and criminal justice and will pursue a doctoral degree in sociology with eyes toward a teaching career. Lives in Escondido with her parents, who are in the United States illegally. Plans to apply for temporary status in a month, when transcripts and other documents are in hand.
QUOTE: "(A work permit) would give me an opportunity to really show my potential. At least it would bring a sense of security. At least I would be able to drive and work. I would be able to contribute to the United States."
NAME: Irving Zambrano
BIRTHPLACE: Mexico City
CURRENT RESIDENCE: San Diego
BACKGROUND: Arrived in San Diego in the back seat of a car when he was 3 years old. Graduated from Patrick Henry High School in San Diego this year and plans to attend San Diego City College this fall. Hopes to transfer to a University of California school, study mechanical engineering and pursue a career in automotive design. Plans to apply for temporary status within a month.
QUOTE: "There are definitely some risks, but I think should be OK with it. I personally don't think I have a lot to worry about. It would have a pretty big impact on my life, being able to work and to help pay for school."
NAME: Juan Santiago
BIRTHPLACE: Coatecas Altas, Oaxaca, Mexico
CURRENT RESIDENCE: Madera, Calif.
BACKGROUND: An indigenous Zapotec Indian from Oaxaca, Mexico, Santiago crossed the Arizona desert into the U.S. with his mother when he was 11, joining his farmworker father and four older brothers in Madera. He is the first member of his family to graduate from high school and go to college. A political science student, he plans to apply for deferred action later this week.
QUOTE: "It's a great relief for us ... Instead of worrying about deportation, we can now focus on our education, for our own benefit and that of this nation. Because we're not leaving the U.S., this is our country."
NAME: Jaime Guzman
BIRTHPLACE: Mexico City, Mexico
CURRENT RESIDENCE: Portland, Ore.
BACKGROUND: Smuggled through a U.S. border checkpoint in a car at age 12. Said he is not planning to apply for deferred action out of a sense of solidarity with young people and family who don't qualify for the program. Currently runs a youth coaching and consulting business.
QUOTE: "I'm at a point in my life where I can accomplish my dreams, and I don't need a piece of paper that says, `you belong here' or `you're part of this society and contributing to this society.'"
NAME: Jaqueline Cinto
CURRENT RESIDENCE: New York
BACKGROUND: Came here more than a decade ago as a teenager. Recently obtained master's degree in education. Will apply for deferred action to be able to use her degree as soon as she has all her transcripts and other documents in order.
QUOTE: "Deferred action is my only chance so far to be able to practice for what I have worked so hard for... I am still a bit hesitant to apply not knowing if I am putting my family at risk of deportation. I am even more afraid that I might be denied deferred action for any reason."
NAME: Bupendra Ram
BIRTHPLACE: Ba, Fiji Islands
CURRENT RESIDENCE: Hawthorne, Calif.
BACKGROUND: Graduate student in communications at California State University, Fullerton. Brought to the U.S. by his parents as a toddler. Hopes to apply as soon as he receives papers from Fiji Islands documenting his departure as a child. Has a job but a work permit would open more opportunities to work at a large company or nonprofit helping other immigrants.
QUOTE: "It's something I have been waiting for since I was 2 years old because that's when I entered the United States.... This offers us an opportunity to fulfill the dreams I've had since I was a child."
NAME: Nathaly Uribe
BIRTHPLACE: Valparaiso, Chile
CURRENT RESIDENCE: Glen Burnie, Md.
BACKGROUND: High school student who hopes to study biochemistry and political science in college. Brought to the U.S. by her parents as a toddler. Wants to apply for deferred action to get a better job to help out her family and pay for college.
QUOTE: "This is my country. It's where my roots are. I have been here since I was 2, I don't remember anything from Chile. It feels great to know that the country that I call home is finally accepting me."
Associated Press writers Amy Taxin, Elliot Spagat, Gosia Wozniacka and Andres Gonzalez contributed to this report.
What is Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals?
Deferred action temporarily prevents deportation of an individual that resides in the United States without a lawful immigration status. <u>It does not give or result in lawful status</u> for the individual, and can be terminated or renewed at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Deferred action does not excuse any past or future period of unlawful presence, however, individuals whose requests are accepted will not increase their unlawful presence in the country while under the action. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals is a new directive introduced by the Obama Administration on June 15, 2012. The policy shift will allow individuals unlawfully brought into the U.S. as children, and who meet certain guidelines, to apply for two years of deferred action subject to renewal and termination at the discretion of the DHS. Once deferred action has been granted, individuals qualify to obtain work authorization in the United States if he or she can prove "an economic necessity for employment." Those applying must meet all specified guidelines, but decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis. <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.eb1d4c2a3e5b9ac89243c6a7543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD" target="_hplink">Source: USCIS</a>
Who Is Eligible?
Individuals currently in removal proceedings, with final orders for removal or with voluntary departure orders, qualify as long as they are not in immigration detention. Those who are in detention can request consideration for deferred action from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Anyone who meets <strong>ALL</strong> 7 guidelines outlined by the Obama Administration is eligible to request deferred action from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Seven Requirements For Eligibility
Applicants must: 1) Be under 31 years of age as of June 15, 2012. You must be at least 15 years of age, with some exceptions.* 2) Have come into the U.S. <u>before</u> the age of 16. 3) Have lived in the U.S. permanently since June 15, 2012. Some travel acceptable.* 4) Have been physically in the U.S. on June 15, 2012 and when applying for deferred action. 5) Have entered the U.S. without inspection before June 15, 2012 or have had their lawful immigration status expire since then. 6) Be currently enrolled in school at the time of the request. Also eligible are individuals who have graduated from high school, obtained a GED certificate, or are a honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard or U.S. Armed Forces. 7) Have not been convicted of a felony, "significant misdemeanor, 3 or more other misdemeanors," and/or are not seen as a threat to national security or public safety. <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.eb1d4c2a3e5b9ac89243c6a7543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD" target="_hplink">*Check USCIS website for details.</a>
How To Apply?
<strong>Before applying</strong>: On their website, the USCIS presents applicants with tips to <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.e8b24a3cec33ca34c48bfc10526e0aa0/?vgnextoid=b9563ab7b8f3b210VgnVCM10000025e6a00aRCRD&vgnextchannel=b9563ab7b8f3b210VgnVCM10000025e6a00aRCRD" target="_hplink">ways to avoid scams</a>. In addition, the USCIS lists <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.e8b24a3cec33ca34c48bfc10526e0aa0/?vgnextoid=0dcc051e2286b210VgnVCM10000025e6a00aRCRD&vgnextchannel=678c051e2286b210VgnVCM10000025e6a00aRCRD" target="_hplink">Before and After Filing Tips</a>, help in finding <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.e8b24a3cec33ca34c48bfc10526e0aa0/?vgnextoid=03be051e2286b210VgnVCM10000025e6a00aRCRD&vgnextchannel=963e051e2286b210VgnVCM10000025e6a00aRCRD" target="_hplink">accredited legal services</a> to aid individuals file for deferred action, and examples of <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.e8b24a3cec33ca34c48bfc10526e0aa0/?vgnextoid=148522800d9bb210VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=7a5ca25b1279f210VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD" target="_hplink">common scams to avoid.</a> <strong>Applying</strong>: USCIS begins accepting applications on August 15, 2012. Any requests received prior to this date will be rejected. For consideration, individuals must submit the following (next slide) to the USCIS Lockbox.
Forms and Fee
The application consists of: 1) A completed and signed, <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.5af9bb95919f35e66f614176543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=05faf6c546129310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=db029c7755cb9010VgnVCM10000045f3d6a1RCRD" target="_hplink">Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival</a>. Forms should include evidence to support that you meet all 7 guidelines of eligibility. 2) <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.5af9bb95919f35e66f614176543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=73ddd59cb7a5d010VgnVCM10000048f3d6a1RCRD&vgnextchannel=db029c7755cb9010VgnVCM10000045f3d6a1RCRD" target="_hplink">Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization</a> 3) <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/USCIS/Forms/Form Pages/i-765ws.pdf" target="_hplink">Form I-765WS, Worksheet</a> (which establishes your economic need for employment) 4) Filing fees for Form I-765, which total to $465.
All applicants will undergo a background check. Once the forms and fee are received and deemed complete by the USCIS, applicants will receive a receipt notice. The applicant can complete an additional form if he or she <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.5af9bb95919f35e66f614176543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=d9056d4e88ac3210VgnVCM100000b92ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=db029c7755cb9010VgnVCM10000045f3d6a1RCRD" target="_hplink">would like to receive this notice electronically</a>. Afterwards, the USCIS will send applicants notice of their mandatory appointment at an Application Support Center (ASC) for biometric services.
Fee waivers for the work authorization application and biometric collection cannot be requested, very limited exceptions exist.* Denial of deferred action does not mean applicants will be placed in removal proceedings, however under exceptional circumstances cases may be referred to ICE.* Deferred action can be extended past the initial two year period unless terminated. USCIS's determination may not be appealed, though cases can be reviewed in certain circumstances.* Applicants should NOT travel outside of the United States as of August 15, 2012. Doing so will make the applicant ineligible for deferred action consideration. <a href="http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.eb1d4c2a3e5b9ac89243c6a7543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD" target="_hplink">*Check USCIS website for details.</a>
How Many People Will Get Relief?
According to The Immigration Policy Center, <a href="http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/who-and-where-dreamers-are" target="_hplink">approximately 1.4 million immigrants in the United States are expected to meet the 7 guidelines</a> of the deferred action initiative, now or in the future. An estimated 936,930 meet those requirements as of August 15, 2012. California (412,560), Texas (226,700), Florida (85,750), and New York (70,170) are the states with the highest number of expected beneficiaries. <a href="http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/who-and-where-dreamers-are" target="_hplink">Click to view complete chart.</a> Mexican immigrants make up almost 70% of those eligible.
Opposition To Deferred Action
<a href="http://www.hstoday.us/briefings/today-s-news-analysis/single-article/dhs-unveils-guidance-for-deferred-action-for-qualfied-young-illegal-aliens/421b6b17eb43472ec0702b4d7c67c602.html" target="_hplink">Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas)</a>, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee: <blockquote>"In order to process the millions of applications from illegal immigrants, the Obama administration will have to divert funding and other resources from processing legal immigration applications. This will lead to a backlog for legal immigrants who followed the rules, while allowing lawbreakers to skip to the front of the line." Adding that the policy shift is an "open invitation for fraud" during the application process. </blockquote> The directive is <a href="http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hiVdc_qD32hV9d6M_29OxHtAjM3A?docId=a822d4de77c04dbcb5ba0af5db581166" target="_hplink">expected to cost $585 million. </a> Presidential candidate Mitt Romney said in an <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-3460_162-57454773/romney-immigration-needs-long-term-fix-not-stop-gap/" target="_hplink">interview with CBS News</a>: <blockquote>"With regards to these kids who were brought in by their parents through no fault of their own, there needs to be a long-term solution so they know what their status is."</blockquote>