The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was created in 2012 by the Obama Administration to allow youth who were brought to the United States by their parents to have a temporary immigration status permitting them to work, study, and obtain driver’s licenses. DACA applicants had to show that they lived in the United States continuously since June 15, 2007 and that they had arrived in the U.S. before age 16. DACA applicants also had to be younger than 31 years of age in 2012. DACA beneficiaries could not have a criminal history, had to be enrolled in or a graduate of high school or college, or serving in the military. Those granted DACA status could renew their status every two (2) years.
On September 5, 2017, the Department of Homeland Security rescinded the executive order creating DACA, and stated that it was winding down the program with certain transitional measures. The issue has been referred to Congress for legislative action. The terms of the winding-down include:
- DACA recipients are able to retain their period of deferred action and their work authorization documents until these documents expire (which could be up to 2 years).
- Documents from current DACA students seeking renewal or work authorization that were filed by Sept. 5 will be processed by the United States Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS) on an individual basis.
- Current DACA students whose benefits will expire in the next six (6) months between Sept. 5, 2017 and March 5, 2018 may apply for renewals by no later than Oct. 5, 2017.
- Those individuals who lose DACA status will no longer be granted employment authorization documents once their DACA status expires.
- DACA beneficiaries will not be granted re-entry or advance travel privileges, and therefore travel (including study abroad) may present issues for DACA beneficiaries, as it is unclear if the student will be able to re-enter the United States at a port-of-entry.
- The Department of Homeland Security has indicated that DACA-expired students will not be an immigration enforcement priority, and information provided to USCIS as part of the DACA program will not be proactively provided to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office for immigration enforcement proceedings, unless the former DACA student meets the criteria for the initiation of removal proceedings (i.e. serious criminal conviction, risk to national security, public safety risk etc.).
See additional information from the Department of Homeland Security regarding DACA:
The University does not track or request information on the immigration status of applicants or students, except as required for students present under a student visa or the exchange visitor program. The University does not discriminate or differentiate between students based on immigration status. The University will continue this practice, which is consistent with the law and supportive of students who have or had DACA status. Students are able to address immigration issues individually, and the University is offering referral to on-campus and off-campus resources to those affected by the rescission of DACA who inquire.
The University is taking steps to advocate for the continuation of the DACA program, to protect DACA students to the fullest extent of the law, and to provide resources to DACA students should they choose to identify themselves.
These steps include the following:
- The University is joining with other higher education institutions and organizations to advocate strongly for a congressional response that would protect DACA students, including the ability to remain in the U.S. to study and work. This action includes the University’s signing onto a statement from the Association of Independent College and Universities of Ohio (AICUO) of support for DACA and a legislative solution, as well as the University’s support for the Association of Jesuit Colleges & Universities (AJCU) statement on support for DACA students. The University will review other options for advocacy at the congressional level.
- The Center for Student Diversity & Inclusion (Salomon Rodezno, firstname.lastname@example.org)and the Office of Global Education (email@example.com) will be available to answer questions from affected students about the change in the DACA program, if requested. These services will include:
- Providing general information and referral to other information on the effect of DACA on students, such as work authorization, etc.
- Discussion of issues regarding travel abroad, including study abroad, for DACA students (in that travel may present issues for DACA-affected students).
- Referral to legal immigration resources in the community, such as Legal Aid, Catholic Charities, or the Cuyahoga County Municipal Bar Association Attorney Referral Service.
- Referral to the University’s Counseling Center and Campus Ministry for counseling assistance for DACA-affected students.
- Referral to other resources in the community, both on- and off-campus, as needed and appropriate.
- Continued monitoring of the status of the DACA program and legislative proposals/action in Congress.
- Individual students, faculty and staff also may choose to advocate for a legislative solution that would permit the continuation of the DACA program by contacting their representatives and senators in Congress.
John Carroll University is not a sanctuary campus, and Saint Francis Chapel is not a sanctuary chapel. The University has reviewed the issue of sanctuary campuses and chapels, and determined it is not the best way to support undocumented or DACA students. We will assist DACA students by providing resources and information as needed. The majority of AJCU institutions have opted for this approach as the most beneficial to the affected students and the institution.
The University is not required to, and does not, track a student’s DACA status. Therefore the University does not have routine access to this information. In addition, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has indicated that DACA students will not be an enforcement priority, and that USCIS will not automatically turn over DACA information to ICE for immigration enforcement. The U.S. government has not indicated there will be targeted enforcement actions against DACA students, except if the student would otherwise fall within an enforcement priority (i.e. serious criminal conviction, national security or public safety risk, etc.).
In addition, the University will take steps to protect students as permitted by law. The University is not an agent of the ICE or USCIS. The University will not permit enforcement actions on University property absent a valid court order or other similar valid legal document, or if a serious safety risk to the University community exists. The University would provide educational records regarding a student only in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and would take other actions only when required by law or when faced with a serious safety risk to the University community.
The University makes every effort to assist all students in finishing their degree programs. The University will examine all options for students to complete their degrees, upon request by a student affected by DACA.