Today’s Supreme Court ruling is a decision hundreds of thousands of so-called Dreamers across the United States have been anxiously awaiting for years.
Since 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has shielded many young undocumented immigrants from deportation. The Trump administration’s 2017 announcement of its plans to end DACA threw their lives into uncertainty.
On Thursday, the Supreme Court blocked the Trump administration’s attempt to end the program. The court’s 5-4 ruling will allow DACA recipients to continue to renew membership in the program and remain in the US – for now. But the Trump administration could move again to rescind the program.
Here’s a look at some key statistics about DACA:
About 650,000 are currently protected from deportation by the program
As of December 2019, there were 649,070 active DACA recipients in the US, according to government statistics.
81% were born in Mexico
But DACA recipients are from all over the world. The most recent available report from US Citizenship and Immigration Services lists more than 190 countries of origin for DACA participants.
Nearly half live in California or Texas
The largest number of DACA recipients live in California. There are 184,880 beneficiaries of the program living there. Texas comes in second. That state is home to 107,020 DACA recipients.
Together, California and Texas account for 45% of the nation’s DACA recipients.
An estimated 29,000 are health care workers
This is a detail the Center for American Progress and other advocates have pointed to for months as the Supreme Court’s decision loomed, warning that a court ruling a could put thousands of health care workers on the front lines at risk for deportation during a pandemic.
Their average age is 26
According to the latest available data from US Citizenship and Immigration Services, the average age of DACA recipients is 26 years old. In order to be eligible for DACA, applicants had to have arrived in the US before age 16 and have lived here since June 15, 2007. They could not have been older than 30 when the Department of Homeland Security enacted the policy in 2012. The US government stopped accepting new applications for DACA in 2017, but has been allowing renewals as a result of court rulings.
They pay an estimated $1.7 billion a year in taxes
According to a 2018 report from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, the young undocumented immigrants who are enrolled in DACA and those who would be eligible for the program if it were still accepting new applicants contribute about $1.7 billion in state and local taxes annually. That figure includes personal income, property, and sales and excise taxes, the institute said.
More than 250,000 US citizens are the children of DACA recipients
According to a Center for American Progress analysis of government data, nearly 256,000 US citizen children have at least one parent who is a DACA recipient.
CNN’s Ariane de Vogue contributed to this report.