What’s Up with DACA: A Guide to Know Your Rights

Posted on September 6, 2017 by Alice Kenny  |  Share

Understanding President Trump's 9/5 Announcement 

Looking for answers on what’s up with the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) after President Trump’s September 5 announcement? 

Find your answers here in Catholic Charities’ DACA Immigration Guide*


What Happened?

President Trump’s simultaneous announcement yesterday, September 5, 2017, to end DACA while, at the same time, urging Congress to act has created, for many, more questions than answers. 

In short, President Trump initiated a wind down of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that allowed certain minors to live and work in the U.S. and protects them temporarily from deportation.


Next Steps for DACA

  1. No initial DACA applications filed on or after September 5, 2017 will be processed or approved. If your application was accepted as of September 5, 2017, it will still be processed.
  2. Any recipient with a permit that will expire between now and March 5, 2018 may re-apply for a two-year renewal.  It needs to be accepted by October 5, 2017. Consult with a legal service provider ASAP if this is your situation.
  3. Permits expiring on or after March 6, 2018 will not be renewable.
  4. Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) will remain valid through the date of expiration. If your valid EAD is lost, stolen or destroyed, you may request a replacement EAD by filing a new Form I-765.
  5. As of September 5, 2017, no new advance parole documents will be issued to DACA recipients. All pending advance parole applications will be closed and application fees will be refunded.

Statement by Cardinal Timothy Dolan

The announcement that DACA – Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – will be rescinded is an ominous development for the 800,000 immigrants who came to our great nation as children and who now face the possibility of losing, through no fault of their own, their right to live, work, and remain with their families here in the United States.  This is contrary to the spirit of the Bible and of our country, and a turning away from the ideals upon which our beloved country was founded.

Today in the Catholic Church we celebrate the Feast Day of a woman who was such a familiar and welcome visitor to this City – Mother Teresa, now Saint Teresa of Calcutta.  Saint Teresa lived out her missionary activity motivated by one simple fact: we are all children of God, made in His image and likeness, which gives everyone – rich or poor, sick or healthy, Black, White, Latino or Asian, immigrant or native born – an inalienable dignity that no person or government can ever take away.  All of the “Dreamers” who now face such uncertainty and fear, please know that the Catholic Church loves you, welcomes you, and will fight to protect your rights and your dignity. 

If there is a positive element to this announcement, it is that there is now time for Congress to act, to pass humane legislation that will make the provisions of DACA law, and provide a way for these men, women, and children, who are very much a part of the fabric of our country, our neighbors, co-workers, fellow parishioners, and friends, to continue their lives as productive and valued members of our country.  We must always remember, as Jesus told us, that laws were made to serve people, people were not made to serve laws.

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It is important to Know Your Rights

1. Work Permits

  • You do not have to tell your employer that DACA has ended, nor do they have a right to know that you are a DACA recipient.
  • You are allowed to work until the permit expires, and your employer cannot fire or change your work status until your permit expires.
  • For more on employee rights


2. Social Security Numbers (SSN)

  • Your SSN will remain valid for life, even when your DACA status ends. You can use it for banking, education, or other purposes.
  • If you do not have one yet, get one!
  • Download the Social Security Number and Card — Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals Flyer :


3. Your Rights with ICE

  • If you are stopped or questioned by ICE you have the right to remain silent.
  • ICE cannot enter your home or workplace without a valid warrant signed by a judge or without permission.

For more on your rights visit:


Actions to Take:

1. Driver’s Licenses/IDs

  • This depends on which state you live.
  • If you are able to get a license or state ID with DACA, do so immediately.
  • Get alternate forms of ID as well, such as municipal ID cards, membership cards, etc., to use once your license/state ID expires.
  • You may want to apply for a passport or consular ID as well, but do NOT show these IDs to ICE agents if you come in contact with them.
  • If you are an NYC resident, get an IDNYC! Visit:

2. Get a legal screening:

  • Call the New Americans Hotline at 1-800-566-7636 for a referral to a trusted legal representative, in particular if you have ever been in removal proceedings.
  • NYC residents, call 311 for an appointment with ActionNYC.

3.  Plan


4.  Stay informed


Important Notes


  • If you are outside the country on advanced parole, return ASAP!
  •  If you were granted advanced parole, but have not traveled yet, talk to an immigration attorney before traveling outside of the country.
  • Note: USCIS can terminate it at any time AND Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) will determine who can be admitted into the US.

Criminal issues:

  • Avoid contact with law enforcement that could lead to arrest.
  • Consult an immigration attorney before taking a plea to any charges.
  • If previously arrested, obtain certificates of disposition.


Please seek advice from a trusted legal representative (attorney or BIA accredited representative) before submitting any renewal applications.

* Information adapted from Immigrant Legal Resource Center, United We Dream, the National Immigration Law Center and the Sept.5th DHS memo.

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Worried about how this DACA announcement can affect you or those you know?

  • Learn about Catholic Charities services for immigrants and refugees:
  • Get Help Now Text: CCNYIMMIGRATION to 80123 for alerts 
  • Call: New Americans Hotline: 1-800-566-7636 - today, tomorrow, or whenever you need immigration information
    Catholic Charities is working with Univision and others to man a special DACA HelpLine today (9/6) and tomorrow (9/7) from 4pm - 7pm

Catholic Charities is responding to the needs of our neighbors during the 
COVID-19 pandemic.

For Help Call 888-744-7900