PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Earlier this month, the Trump Administration announced its plans to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program which protected around 800,000 people brought to the United States illegally as children.
On Sunday, local immigration lawyers helped recipients of the DACA program renew their permits. The line stretched around the block.
“These are people who have come out of the shadows on a promise from the government to be able to work, to go to school, some of them have joined the military,” ACLU of Oregon Legal Director Mat Dos Santos said about the DACA recipients, “and once these permits expire, they’re in a lurch.”
Renewing paperwork and permits, Dos Santos said, can be an expensive and tricky process. If a person’s permit expires before March 5. then they have until Oct. 5 to renew their paperwork, which would be good for 2 years. Those with permits that expire after March 5 are essentially out of luck.
There is uncertainty over what the next step for the DACA program and its recipients will be. Yanely Rivas, Unite Oregon’s lead organizer for Washington County, wants people on the topic to remember something.
“I think that often times we forget we’re dealing with people and families and humans,” Rivas said.