Positive Changes for DACA
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (‘DACA’) has been under constant media and court scrutiny since the Trump Administration rescinded the program in September 2017. Since then, there were two major cases which were hailed as “wins” for Dreamers and their advocates. The first win was a preliminary injunction issued by the Federal District Court in California and was effective nationwide. This injunction directed DHS to resume accepting applications for renewal of DACA benefits but did not require the agency to accept new DACA applications. In the same month, the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York held similarly to California: DHS must resume consideration of renewal applications but did not require the consideration of initial applications or applications for advance parole. In March 2018, the District Court in Maryland enjoined DHS from “using information provided by Dreamers through DACA program for enforcement purposes”.
Tuesday’s decision marks a shift from previous court judgments. The US District court of DC nullified the 2017 Rescission of DACA but gave the government 90 days within which Department of Homeland Security (‘DHS’) may reissue a memorandum rescinding DACA, this time providing a fuller explanation of their determination that the program lacks statutory or constitutional authority.
What this means in practice is that if the government fails to issue a memorandum with sufficient support and reasons for its rescission of DACA, DACA will be restored in full! Should this happen, DHS will be required to resume accepting new DACA applications and applications for advanced parole on July 23, 2018. This is a marked step forward from previous decisions and a positive sign for all the Dreamers in the US.