By Nancy Lopez for South Kern Sol
Nearly fifteen months after the Obama administration announced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), approximately half of all eligible immigrants in California have yet to apply.The program offers temporary legal status to qualifying undocumented immigrants who entered the country at or before age 16, and who have lived in the United States continuously since 2007.According to the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) there are approximately 300,000 individuals who meet DACA’s age, educational, and other eligibility criteria in California. Just under half of those had applied as of June 2013, according to MPI.
Can’t cover the cost
Although the application fee of $465 has been attainable for many individuals, in part given the employment opportunities that can open up once one receives a legal work permit, many immigrant families don’t earn enough to afford the fee.
It took over a year of saving for Martha Lopez, 18, a recent high school graduate living in Bakersfield, took be able to send in her DACA application.
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