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Udall, Heinrich Call For Extension Of DACA Renewal Deadline In Wake Of Storms

on September 28, 2017 - 6:14am
WASHINGTON, D.C.  In the wake of three massive storms that have disrupted the day-to-day lives of millions of people, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich joined a group of 36 senators calling on the Trump administration to extend the crucial Oct. 5 deadline for Dreamers to renew their DACA status.
According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), tens of thousands of DACA recipients live in areas impacted by the storms.
“In the last month, several major hurricanes made landfall in the Unites States. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma devastated Texas and Florida. Hurricane Maria recently crippled Puerto Rico, leaving the entire island without electricity. These major hurricanes significantly disrupted day to day living and operations in these states and territories,”wrote the senators in a letter to Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke. “It would be appropriate for the government to extend the October 5, 2017deadline nationwide to allow individuals adequate time to meet the government’s recent request.”
The Trump administration announced earlier this month that it was ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program which allows some immigrants who came to the U.S. before the age of 16 to work and go to school without the fear of being deported. The government will continue to accept DACA renewal applications for individuals whose current DACA status expires by March 5, 2018. Those renewal applications and a $495 fee are due by Oct. 5 and the lawmakers fear the recent disruptions caused by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria could make it nearly impossible for some eligible Dreamers to meet the deadline.
“Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico are still working to recover and will be for some time,” wrote the senators. “An extension of the deadline would provide DACA recipients more time to collect the $495 application fee and gather the necessary documents to accurately complete the renewal application.”
A copy of the letter is available here.