What is DACA?

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA is a policy that protects around 800,000 young people who entered the United States as children. The program does not grant them official legal status or a pathway to citizenship, but it does provides a 2-year deferment from deportation actions allow them to apply for a driver’s license, social security number, and work permit.

DACA History

Using elements from LGBTQ+ organizing, undocumented youths “came out of the shadows” and revealed their undocumented status publicly. These people strategized marches, direct-action campaigns, and sit-ins in congressional offices to push the passage of the DREAM Act. Unfortunately, after years of strategizing, the DREAM Act failed.

This failure of Congress only fueled the undocumented community to apply even more pressure on President Obama. DACA exists because undocumented youth, without citizenship or the right to vote, came forward exposing themselves to detention, deportation, and family separation. 

The DREAM Act is introduced by Dick Durbin and Orrin Hatch.


DREAM Act was introduced in the House but failed to pass the Senate.


President Barack Obama announces DACA policy

June 15, 2012

President Barack Obama proposes DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans)

November 2014

A federal district judge in Texas  bars DAPA from taking effect

February 2015

Supreme Court  affirms the Fifth Circuit court’s decision on DAPA and effectively halting the program.

June 2016

The Trump administration rescinds DACA

Sept 15, 2017

US Supreme Court ruled against the Trump administration's attempt to cancel DACA

June 2020

A federal judge in Texas ruled that DACA is illegal and blocked new applicants

July 2021

A Judiciary Committee was directed to outline a plan for “lawful permanent status for qualified immigrants,” such as DACA recipient, as part of The Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill.

August 2021