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Why DACA Filings Remain On the Rise

Last month, we reported on the statistics released by USCIS in connection with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) filings.  It’s hard to believe another month has passed but the statistics have been updated again for December.

From a review the statistics, the trend is that applications continue to rise. USCIS has accepted more than 355,000 DACA requests for review, approved more than 102,000 to date with more than 157,000 currently under review. Applications are slowing to a steady pace but the data still indicates the number of approvals are on the rise, albeit slowly.

Why so much faith in DACA?  For a program that provides temporary and potentially ephemeral relief from removal, it is not a very strong promise to the young candidates the program targets.  That doesn’t seem to deter DACA candidates.

Month Approvals
August 0
September 1707
October 26,908
November 47,954
December 26,396 (1/2 month)

The recent presidential elections not only secured the future of the program, at least for another four years, but demonstrated a significant shift of political power in this country to a growing Latino electorate.  This shift has helped to accelerate discussions on comprehensive immigration reform (CIR) on how to manage approximately 11 million unauthorized immigrants in this country. Sometime in 2013, many conversations will converge and transform into, what many hope, to be a comprehensive immigration reform package.

According to our latest poll as of December 14, 2012, when asked which aspect of CIR many would like to see passed, an overwhelming majority (88%) wanted to see a version of DACA with a path to citizenship passed.   Reform, though, must still account for means in which certain business industries in the U.S. can employ foreign labor. For many immigration service providers, including attorneys, non-profits and community organizations, following the developments of DACA has been an important means of providing accurate information to the public.  It’s also been critical for organizations, no matter the size, to be able to provide timely service to foreign nationals.

In October, we highlighted ways in which service providers can maximize their resources using technology to help save time.  The recommendation remains strong and we encourage practitioners seeking advice on implementing a case management system to explore this option further with us.