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A new act could protect DACA recipients. Photo courtesy: Wikimedia. 
A new act could protect DACA recipients. Photo courtesy: Wikimedia. 

‘BRIDGES’ Over Walls for DACA recipients

The Bridge Act could be DACA recipients' saving grace.

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With DACA recipients increasingly at risk for deportation by the Trump administration, there is a looming sense that the federal government and Immigrations and Custom Enforcement (ICE) are putting a target on the recipients they once promised to protect.

But the system of checks and balances working in full effect, there is a bill in congress that may be able to prevent the executive branch under Trump from deporting or placing undue hardship on those who once felt completely safe due to their DREAMer status. 

The Bar Removal of Individuals who Dream and Grow our Economy Act or the ‘BRIDGE’ Act is working as the only measure that could effectively make the deportation of DACA recipients illegal.

As an amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act, the BRIDGE act adds more agency to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) with greater agency to provide temporary protections to those who qualify including a three-year provisional protected presence, automatic employment authorization, and a prevention from removal from the states, the BRIDGE act is a comprehensive approach to ensuring that the law protects DACA recipients to the fullest.

One thing the bill also address is the confidentiality of the applicant’s information, with security exceptions and creates criteria and guidelines for how DHs may retract the protections of an individual under the law.    

The law reads: “DHS may not: (1) remove an alien who appears prima facie eligible for protected presence while the alien's application is pending, or (2) refer individuals whose cases have been deferred pursuant to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA) or who have been granted protected presence to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

A DACA alien is deemed to have protected presence through the expiration date of his or her deferred action status.”

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