How many students are eligible for immigration relief under the president’s order? The estimate is 800,000 nationally, and 95,000 in Illinois, says Josh Hoyt of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights. Those who came to the U.S. illegally as children and who have completed or are in school or military service will be eligible for work permits, but not citizenship.
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U.S. Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Chicago) says he expects an immediate effort by so-called notarios, dishonest lawyers and others to offer to help these kids, for a fee. “There are going to be those out in our community that are going to want to exploit and take advantage of this situation,” he warned those who are eligible. “There’s nothing to apply for! The regulations and the forms will be issued in approximately 60 days.” Gutierrez says then, his office and community groups will help applicants for free.