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Immigration Initiatives—Spring Quarter Updates

  ·  Julián Lazalde

Here are the latest immigration updates from the Forum.

DACA/DAPA: The court case that has stalled the President’s executive actions to expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA+) and launch the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents program (DAPA) will be heard by the Supreme Court later this month. Oral arguments are set to begin April 18. Though the executive orders were issued in November 2014, the case has been in legal limbo since February 2015 when a Texas Circuit Court judge placed an injunction on them, preventing their implementation.

The case has only grown in notoriety with the recent unexpected death of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, which was followed by a Senate political impasse to consider the President’s Supreme Court nominee.   Only eight Supreme Court Justices will hear the case, as opposed to nine. The potential for a split four-to-four vote on this case would mean the injunction would remain, and in turn, end any hope for implementation of DACA+ and DAPA before the end of the Obama presidency.

It is important to note that the original DACA program, implemented in 2012, is still in effect. Need help determining if you or someone you know may be eligible for DACA 2012? The Forum has compiled a DACA resource packet, and strongly urges those who may be eligible for administrative relief to also seek qualified, accredited legal assessment.

DACA Workshops: If you live in suburban Cook or DuPage County, and are interested in learning how to engage your schools in a DACA workshop for students, parents and school administrators please contact Julián Lazalde.

Expanding Financial Aid: Join the Forum, the University of Illinois and student organizations from campuses across the state by supporting Senate Bill 2196, sponsored by State Senator Iris Martinez.  This legislation would allow 4-year public universities in Illinois to provide financial aid to undocumented students. To support, click here

Immigrants do pay taxes: With their contributions in the billions, a new report out this month shows undocumented immigrants pay a significant amount of local and state taxes, debunking many xenophobic myths. The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy’s (ITEP) report, “Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions,” provides detailed information from all 50 states.

The infographic below offers an overview of ITEP's findings: 

If you’re eligible, become a U.S. citizen: Coinciding with this year’s election season, the New American Democracy Campaign is holding workshops across the Chicagoland region to help eligible people apply for their U.S. citizenship.

If you or someone you know is an eligible legal permanent resident, click here for more details.Families across the state, including immigrant families, continue to feel the pain as the division in Springfield on the state budget widens. The Forum will continue to work with community stakeholders, policymakers and elected officials to find a solution to the budget impasse that includes new forms of sustainable revenue.

Posted In: Immigration, Immigration Reform & Policy, Immigrant Integration, Leadership