While deferred deportation programs are held up in court, immigration advocates and their supporters are declaring Illinois ready to help the undocumented if judges rule in favor of the president’s executive actions. This would have been the week undocumented immigrants could apply for protection under the programs known as DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans) and an expanded form of DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).
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While the programs are on hold thanks to a federal judge in Texas, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) says it’s a matter of when, not if, those protections will be implemented.
“We want to prepare people for the day when DAPA will be the law of the land, when extended DACA is offered to young people across the United States,” Durbin said. “In order to do that and do that successfully, we must stand united and must stand determined and never be discouraged.”
Durbin says these programs would benefit up to 280,000 immigrants in Illinois.
Immigration groups are recommending people who may qualify for DAPA and expanded DACA take steps to ensure they’re ready to apply if or when the court injunction is lifted. Those steps include collecting the necessary documents, and having enough money on hand to pay the $465 application fee.