DACA AND HISPANIC POPULATIONS IN NORTH TEXAS
Maria Maciel, Victoria Lockwood.
Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX.
The Obama Administration issued a memorandum, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, DACA, in 2012 affecting immigrants all over the United States. This memorandum is often mistaken for the DREAM Act, an immigration reform bill that never passed. The purpose of this research is to synthesize and better understand the effects of this memorandum on DACA-eligible immigrants in North Texas, determine whether or not the policy is worth pursuing, and if this memorandum is the answer to a future successful immigration reform law. Based on the popularity of DACA over the past 2 years, it is presumed that if there are negative consequences in pursuing DACA, the benefits outweigh them. The data were collected by performing extensive literature reviews and conducting interviews of DACA-eligible individuals and 2 immigration attorneys in the Dallas area. The results thus far indicate that DACA has benefited many immigrants educationally and financially, although it has also introduced a new form of discrimination. Deferred action is the first step in the direction of a comprehensive immigration reform law, although by no means has it come close. It has drastically improved the lives of people eligible to apply, although the question about its longevity remains a concern.