President Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration
Yesterday, President Obama made an announcement on national TV setting forth an executive action on immigration. This is not comprehensive reform, but it does provide temporary relief for some undocumented people here, along with other measures.
For now, all we know is an outline of this action. Here is a brief description of what President Obama announced:
1.Expand DACA (deferred action for childhood arrivals) to include children who entered the USA under age 16 who have been continuously present since 1/1/2010;
2. Allow parents of US citizens and green card holder children who have been present in the USA since 1/1/2010, with no criminal record, to apply for temporary relief from deportations for 3 year periods;
3. Expand the provisional waiver of unlawful presence to include green card holder spouses and children as well as children of US citizens;
4. Clarify and improve certain immigrant and non immigrant business visas; and
5. Provide a memorandum explaining and clarify enforcement priorities and the use of prosecutorial discretion by ICE and immigration courts.
The forms and specifics are not available yet, but the expanded DACA program is set to start in 90 days and the deferred action for parents (“DAP”).
This is a win for immigrants and advocates in the USA, but it still does not remove the crucial need for comprehensive immigration reform. This is merely a bandaid (a good one!) and we still need to provide permanent solutions. Keep watching for updates!