At least 50,000 immigrants have applied for DACA since the program was reopened. Most are still waiting

July 18, 2021


Approximately 50,000 immigrant teenagers and young adults applied for deportation relief under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy in the three months after the Obama-era program was reopened to first-time applicants in December, according to newly released government data.

Between January and March, fewer than 800 immigrants — or 1.5% of the applicants during that time span — had their first-time applications for DACA approved, alarming advocates who point to a looming court decision that threatens the program’s existence.

A federal judge in Texas who has previously called DACA unlawful is set to issue a ruling on the legality of the policy, which several Republican-led states are seeking to dismantle. The Texas-led coalition of states have argued the Obama administration overreached its executive authority when it created DACA in 2012.