Join us to fight for a clean Dream Act Now

Dreamers fought tooth and nail for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Now it’s time for Congress to act and create a permanent solution. Passing the Dream Act, with no tradeoffs that increase detention or deportations, is a first step toward the goal of creating a pathway to citizenship for all 11 million undocumented immigrants. There is no time to lose: we need Congress to act immediately and pass the bipartisan Dream Act of 2021. It’s up to each of us to build the country we want to live in. Now is the time. Join the fight.

California is My Home

Check out our California campaign in support of the Dream Act. #CAismyhome

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Frequently Asked Questions:

What does a “clean” Dream Act mean?

The Dream Act of 2021 is bipartisan legislation that provides a path to citizenship for more than 2 million immigrant youth and young adults who came to the U.S. as kids. It is the Senate companion bill to the American Dream and Promise Act (H.R. 6), which passed the House on March 18.

The legislation should be clean and avoid conditioning solutions for Dreamers on harsh and unnecessary policies that target immigrant and border communities. A clean Dream Act would not include:

  • Attacks protections for people seeking asylum;
  • Funding for a border wall and increased border security that further militarizes border communities;
  • Funding for increased interior enforcement, which would involve more raids and deportations;
  • Funding for more immigration detention centers; or
  • Mandatory use of E-Verify, the federal government’s employment verification program.

What can I do to help?

  • Congress needs to hear from you: Contact your senators and tell them you support the bipartisan Dream Act of 2021. Urge them to cosponsor the bill and push to pass it immediately.
  • You have the power: set up in-district meetings with your Senator and Congressperson and urge them to defend Dreamers and pass the Dream Act right away. Our in-district meeting guide can be found here.
  • Make noise: attend virtual town halls, write letters to the editor, and speak out in support of Dreamers.

What is DACA?

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is a program created in 2012 under the Obama administration to give undocumented young people who came to the United States as children the ability to study and work here without fear of deportation. Applicants had to have come to the U.S. before age 16 and meet other requirements, including presenting a record free of felony or serious misdemeanor convictions. Recipients were granted DACA for up to two years, when they had to renew their applications with the Department of Homeland Security. About 800,000 young people received DACA.

If Trump ended DACA, why do people still have it?

Donald Trump rescinded the DACA program on September 5, 2017, but federal courts, and ultimately the Supreme Court, blocked his administration’s attempts to terminate the program. Many Dreamers, however, still lost DACA protections due to hurdles created by his administration. Upon taking office, President Biden directed the Department of Homeland Security to preserve DACA, but opponents of the program are still challenging it in federal court.

What happens to people when they lose their DACA?

Life as they know it immediately stops. Without DACA protections, Dreamers can no longer work legally and, depending on where they live and study, they may not be able to drive or attend school, either. Some Dreamers may then be unable to support their families, pay their mortgages, or proceed with other aspects of their lives. They are also at greater risk of deportation, which could mean losing the people they love most and the places they know best, and ending up in places where they may not even speak the language or have any family connections.

So DACA’s been restored. What do we do now?

DACA was never meant to be a permanent solution, and ongoing political and legal challenges continue to threaten the program. Now is the time for Congress to act. The vast majority of Americans — over 80 percent, according to most recent polls — agree that Dreamers should be allowed to stay in the U.S., the only country that many call home. To ensure that Dreamers can continue to work and live here without fear of deportation, we need Congress to pass a clean Dream Act immediately. The bipartisan Dream Act would protect undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as kids, and meet certain requirements, with a pathway to citizenship. This would offer a real solution, and give people who are American in every way but paperwork a path forward.

What’s the difference between people with DACA and Dreamers?

“Dreamers” is a catch-all term referring to undocumented young people who came to the United States as children. They may or may not have DACA, the program temporarily permitting some of them to stay here and work.

Why don’t people with DACA just get legal status and citizenship?

They can’t. There’s no path to legal status or citizenship for undocumented young people. Even the simple fact of marrying a U.S. citizen can be complicated and require the undocumented person to leave the U.S. for years in order to qualify for long-term status.

How do Dreamers impact the economy?

DACA has allowed Dreamers to pursue work and educational opportunities that were previously inaccessible to them. For that reason, the program has been a major driver of economic growth for cities and states that reap the benefits of DACA recipients’ increased spending power and tax dollars. That’s why over 800 business leaders signed a letter calling on Congress to pass the bipartisan Dream Act. Passing the Dream Act would have a tremendous economic impact on state economies across the country and would add a total of $22.7 billion annually to the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP).

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