ACE, Higher Ed Groups: Pass Legislation Now to Protect Dreamers
November 18, 2022

​ACE and over 60 other higher education associations sent a letter Nov. 17 to House and Senate leaders urging them to make protecting Dreamers and the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program a priority, given recent court decisions declaring DACA illegal that have left Dreamers once again in a devastating legal limbo.

Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and other legislators held a press conference Nov. 16 on the need to address this issue before the next Congress convenes. In his remarks, Durbin appealed to his Republican colleagues—he needs 10 votes from the other side of the aisle to ensure passage of some version of the DREAM Act—and noted the historically bipartisan support Dreamers have had in Congress and from the American public.

Since its inception in 2012, DACA has protected hundreds of thousands of young immigrants—many of them college students—from deportation and allowed them to pursue their educations, work legally in the United States, and serve in the military. Texas and a group of Republican state attorneys general sued in 2018, arguing that DACA was illegally implemented by executive order during the Obama administration. In July 2021, a U.S. District Court judge in Texas sided with the states.

The Biden administration in August released the final version of new regulations to strengthen and protect DACA. That process was the first time DACA had gone through a formal rulemaking process, aimed at providing protections for DACA against ongoing court challenges after years of legal wrangling during both the Obama and Trump administrations.

It has been reported that House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said during a House Democrats’ caucus meeting this week that the House would try to pass the Dream Act in the lame-duck session.

Remember the Dreamers website logo

The Remember the Dreamers campaign is working to focus Congress on ​​finding a legislative solution for Dreamers and DACA recipients. Working together, the higher education community plays a vital role in both advocating for and assisting these young people, many of whom are students on our campuses.