More than 3,400 individuals who were previously undocumented immigrants have now been granted legal status in South Carolina. President Obama implemented a program called deferred action in 2012 and this program has helped several individuals to live in the country without the fear of deportation. This program is meant for the undocumented immigrants in America who came to the country as children.
USCIS has so far granted deferred action status to more than 500,000 individuals. Undocumented youth who have been granted this status can obtain employment authorization documents and driver’s licenses.
Republicans in the House have voiced mixed feelings about the President’s program and some Republicans are now talking about the Kids Act that the members of the House are working on. This Act is similar to the DREAM Act, that would permit the undocumented youth to obtain US citizenship.
Deferred action program was implemented in 2012 and this program halts the deportation of the eligible undocumented youth in America. Undocumented youth who receive this temporary status can live and work in the country for a two year period and they can renew deferred action. If their applications for renewal are approved they can stay back in the country for two more years.
People who receive deferred action status can get work permits, Social Security credentials and driver’s licenses. Undocumented immigrants who are not older than 30 years and who got into the country prior to age 16, can file Form I-821D for deferred action. Likewise, they need to be high school graduates and law abiding individuals, to qualify.
Applications filed by 537,662 immigrants have been approved by the USCIS and the agency has rejected 19,750 applications. 3,438 immigrants have been granted deferred action status in South Carolina.
Reports state that more number of immigrants who apply for deferred action status are from Mexico, Latin America and India. Most of them who have now received deferred action status have been living in America since they were one or two years old and they do not know their home countries.
Deferred action recipients and the other undocumented immigrants in America are now waiting for the House to debate on the Senate bill and pass it. That is because the Senate bill would permit the undocumented immigrants to apply for legal status and allow the DREAMers to apply for permanent resident status five years after they become legal residents. Moreover, this bill would grant the DREAMers authorization to apply for US citizenship, as soon as they become permanent residents.