It’s Time to Make a Final Move on Immigration

Estefany Pacheco, J1 Staff Writer

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In a previous article I wrote about DACA and the need for the government to find a way to protect DREAMERS. (https://pbmainstream.com/4502/opinions/bring-daca-back-u-s-needs-to-protect-dreamers/)

President Donald Trump’s recent tweets and statements about DACA and the role that he feels democrats are playing in the problems associated with finding a permanent solution have created a bigger issue. Now it is time to figure out how to really solve this issue.

DACA, ended by Donald Trump on March 5th, meant disaster for a significant number of young people who rely on or wished to enroll in the program. This termination of the program meant only people that already have DACA status could renew it. If DACA is no more, then the government needs to find a permanent alternative for immigrants who wish to be productive people in the United States.

There are, essentially, several ways that this immigration problem can be resolved. The first was to keep DACA in place, but that decision has already been made.

The second option is to create new legislation that would allow illegal immigrants to be able to get a driver’s license and work on the record and be able to take advantage of opportunities. Having the chance to have health care and being able to develop a credit score in order to apply for a credit card have become the basic building blocks of people’s lives.

However, exactly what legislation to put in place is the question. There are, according to  Jessica Taylor of NPR, four political options to replace DACA. These options are:

The Dream Act, sponsored by Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.This option, according to Taylor, “…has many of the same protections in place as DACA does and also creates a path for citizenship or permanent legal resident status if applicants meet certain requirements. DACA did not provide such a path.”

The Recognizing America’s Children Act, sponsored by Rep. Carlos Curbelo, R-Fla. According to Taylor, this act uses elements of DACA “…while also providing a pathway toward legal status and, eventually, citizenship.”

According to Taylor, “The bill provides immigrants that have been vetted by the Department of Homeland Security with three pathways toward legalization: higher education, service in the armed forces or work authorization.”

The American Hope Act, sponsored by Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., and BRIDGE Act, sponsored by Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo.. According to Taylor, in order to qualify for The American Hope Act and BRIDGE  Act you have to have been in the United States before turning 18. She also notes that “The bill does not include any work, education or military requirements but does reject people who have been convicted of certain crimes, according to the NILC [National Immigration Law Center].”

Another important factor, according to Taylor, is that the American Hope Act and BRIDGE Act will allow  instant citizenship. “Those eligible can apply for conditional permanent residency, valid for up to eight years, and after three years can apply for lawful permanent residence status. After a total of five years, they can apply for U.S. citizenship.”

Ultimately, coming up with a solution will allow illegal immigrants to get support.They will  not have fear of deportation, and they will become fully contributing members of our society.

 

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It’s Time to Make a Final Move on Immigration