Newhouse to Homeland Security: Change Unworkable DACA Deadline
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representative Dan Newhouse (R-WA) released the following statement after joining Rep. Scott Taylor (R-VA) and colleagues in a bipartisan request to Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Elaine Duke to extend the administration’s renewal deadline for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program beneficiaries. Currently, DACA beneficiaries face a renewal permit deadline on October 5th, 2017. The Members requested January 15, 2018 as the earliest deadline for permit renewal:
“The fast-approaching deadline to renew their status will place thousands of Dreamers in legal limbo unless a workable solution is put in place,” said Rep. Newhouse. “I join my colleagues in requesting that the administration provide additional flexibility for Dreamers while Congress works on a legislative solution.”
Rep. Newhouse is a cosponsor of legislative protections for children brought here through no fault of their own, including H.R. 496, the Bar Removal of Individuals who Dream and Grow our Economy (BRIDGE) Act, and H.R.1468, the Recognizing America's Children (RAC) Act. Rep. Newhouse is also a cosponsor of H.R.60, the Encourage New Legalized Immigrants to Start Training (ENLIST) Act.
See below for the text of the letter:
September 26, 2017
The Honorable Elaine C. Duke
Secretary of Homeland Security
Washington, D.C. 20528
Dear Acting Secretary Duke,
We are writing to express our profound concern and desire for relief from the administration’s new deadline for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program permit renewal of October 5th, 2017. We believe that the decision to require all DACA recipients whose permits expire in the next six months to have their renewal submitted by October 5th is a deadline that is arbitrary and puts an undue financial burden on many law-abiding people within the program.
It will result in tens of thousands of current DACA holders losing their protection from deportation and ability to work legally and contribute to our nation. Further, it may push many into the shadows from fear. We ask that you postpone the current deadline, and replace it with the new date of January 15th, 2018 or until Congress acts.
According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), 154,000 DACA beneficiaries have expiration dates between September 5th, 2017 and March 5th, 2018. Your recent announcement gives these 154,000 only a few short weeks to submit their DACA renewal applications. The artificial October 5th deadline to submit 154,000 DACA renewal applications is unworkable and impractical.
In the wake of this decision we respectfully request that the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services extend the deadline for deferred action renewal until January 15th, 2018 or until Congress has time to consider a legislative solution.
Thank you for your consideration and we look forward to your swift reply.