New Report: New Administration Policy Will Reduce Number of DACA Recipients Through Higher Cost, Delays, and Denials

Upwards of 400k DACA recipients could face “substantial barrier” to renewal

September 29, 2020
CONTACT: Jose Magaña-Salgado (

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, the Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration (“Presidents’ Alliance”) and TheDream.US released a new report, Discouraging and Denying Renewals: An Assessment on the Impact of the July 2020 DHS Memorandum on DACA, which surveyed close to 1,800 DACA recipients to assess the impact of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s new DACA policies. You can read the full report here. Key takeaways from the report include:

  • The majority of survey respondents (62 percent) said that the new policies would constitute a “substantial barrier” to renewal. If this percentage holds steady for the general population, nearly 400,000 DACA recipients would face significant barriers to renewal.
  • Upwards of 36 percent of DACA holders may have their renewal applications rejected for filing “too early” under the new policy. 
  • Eighty-two percent of respondents said that the one year grant period would constitute a barrier to higher education 
  • Eighty-seven percent of respondents said that the one year grant period would constitute a barrier to employment and career 
  • Fifty-six percent worried that their DACA status would lapse due to the new restrictions and they would be fired.

Miriam Feldblum, Executive Director for the Presidents’ Alliance, stated: “The report confirms what many of us feared–the Acting Secretary’s new memorandum is simply a cruel attempt to circumvent the Supreme Court’s decision restoring DACA. The barriers enacted by the memorandum would also serve to dramatically undermine the ability of DACA recipients to begin, participate in, and complete higher education, especially for the 216,000 DACA-eligible students currently enrolled in higher education. The Acting Secretary must rescind his memorandum and fully restore DACA.”

Candy Marshall, President, TheDream.US, stated: “USCIS’s actions are not only in blatant disregard of the ruling of the Supreme Court of this country, they are contrary to what 85 percent of the people in this country agree upon–DREAMers should have the ability to continue to stay and work in this country. The one year renewal and the 150 day restriction on renewal applications are barriers that will increase the risk of DACA-recipients losing status and thus their ability to support their families. This will only serve to exacerbate the ongoing financial and related insecurities DREAMers and their families face since COVID-19. Put simply, these barriers are unconscionable and must be removed.” 


The non-partisan Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration brings together college and university leaders dedicated to increasing public understanding of how immigration policies and practices impact our students, campuses and communities, and supporting policies that create a welcoming environment for undocumented, immigrant, and international students. The Alliance is composed of approximately 500 presidents and chancellors of public and private colleges and universities, representing over five million students in 41 states, D.C., and Puerto Rico. 

TheDream.US is the nation’s largest college access and success program serving undocumented immigrants. TheDream.US has awarded over 6,000 scholarships for DREAMers to pursue a college degree at one of 70+ Partner Colleges in 16 states and Washington D.C. TheDream.US Scholars are scholarship recipients.