DACA was created in 2012 to protect young immigrants who were brought to the United States as minors and consider this country their home. Under the program, immigrant youth who meet certain requirements are protected against deportation and can access some legal rights.
Last fall, the Trump administration decided to stop accepting new and renewal DACA applications, and said that DACA would shut down on March 5, 2018. Several organizations sued to save the DACA program, and the case is making its way through the federal court system.
What’s the Status Update?
On February 26, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court said that the government must still accept DACA application RENEWALS while the courts decide what to do with the DACA program.
What DACA Recipients Need to Know
- DACA still exists and you can use your benefits
- If your DACA status expired after September 5, 2016, you can submit a renewal application now
- First time applications are NOT accepted.
Your Health Care Rights – Regardless of Immigration Status or Age
If you are a DACA recipient living in California, know that you have rights to access health care services. Here are some things to know:
- Medi-Cal: Low-income undocumented children and DACA recipients under the age of 19 in California can sign up for Medi-Cal. Medi-Cal covers all health services, including birth control, abortion care, sexually transmitted disease testing + treatment, and cervical + breast cancer screenings.
- Community Clinics: If you are over 19 and can’t sign up for health coverage, you can still get low-cost health care at any of these community health centers.
- Family PACT: Teens and adults can get confidential, free sexual and reproductive health services through the Family PACT program at any of these clinics regardless of immigration status.
- No matter what your immigration status is, teens under the age of 18 don’t need parent or guardian permission to get birth control, abortion care, HPV vaccine, STD testing or mental health services. Learn more about your health care and sexual health rights at Teensource.org.
Resources for DACA Youth
If you are or know a DACA recipient, know that you still have rights. Check out these resources to answer questions you may have:
- Things to Know About DACA: https://www.nilc.org/2018/01/13/five-things-know-latest-uscis-announcement/
- Know Your Rights – National Immigration Law Center: https://www.nilc.org/issues/immigration-enforcement/everyone-has-certain-basic-rights/
- Get legal help: http://www.cdss.ca.gov/Benefits-Services/More-Services/Immigration-Services/Immigration-Services-Contractors
- Mental Health Emergency Toolkit: http://weareheretostay.org/resources/mental-health-emergency-toolkit/