Nearly 80,000 DACA Recipients have an Arrest Record; USCIS Report Shows

Back in 2012, President Barack Obama unilaterally implemented the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, commonly known as DACA. The program was designed to grant working papers to young adults with clean records who were brought to the US as young children under no fault of their own.

However, a new report by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services found a sizable minority of the nearly 800,000 DACA recipients either had a criminal record at the time of enrollment or in the time afterwards.

The report found 109,530 undocumented applicants out of 888,818 had an arrest record – 12.3%. Not all of those who applied were granted entry into the DACA program. 77,833 were denied; over 30% of which had a criminal record.

Of the 765,166 DACA applicants who were approved, 79,398 , or 10.4% had a known arrest history. The program is open only for individuals between the ages of 15 and 31, meaning 10% of those in that age group had been arrested. Of the nearly 80,000 approved recipients with an arrest record, almost 68,000 had an arrest on their record before entering the program with close to 16,000 being arrested after entry.

The debate over DACA was renewed in recent weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court decided to hear three DACA related cases after President Trump fulfilled a campaign promise to end the program. As it was created by the executive branch during the previous administration, there shouldn’t be much legal issue with closing out the program within the executive branch.

It is worth noting about 30% of adult Americans have an arrest record, though that includes older adults as well as 15-31 year olds.

Categories: U.S. News

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