MAP: How Ending DACA Could Play Out Across States

President Trump ordered an end on Tuesday to the Obama-era program that protected young immigrants from deportation. The decision could disrupt some local economies.
by | September 5, 2017
DACA supporters rally in front of the White House.
Supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program demonstrate in front of the White House on Sunday. (AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The Trump administration’s decision on Tuesday to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will have far-reaching implications on states and localities.

The Obama-era program provided two-year deportation protection to young immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally before turning 16, provided they met education and other requirements.

In areas where young immigrants are most concentrated, ending DACA could potentially disrupt local economies. A survey conducted earlier this month by the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, found 91 percent of responding DACA recipients were currently employed.

The survey also indicated that DACA may have helped immigrants climb the economic ladder: 54 percent said they secured their first job after DACA approval, and 69 percent said they got a pay raise after DACA approval. Other research suggests the children of immigrants eventually contribute more in taxes, on average, than native-born Americans once they start working.

According to the latest federal data, approximately half of the nearly 800,000 DACA beneficiaries -- otherwise known as "Dreamers" -- live in just three states: California, Illinois and Texas. With a few exceptions, Dreamers are most prevalent throughout the western U.S. On a per capita basis, states with the highest tallies of DACA participants as of March were California, Texas and Nevada.

By comparison, fewer than 100 people have signed up for the program in four states, according to figures published by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

 

 
DACA Participants Per 10K
SOURCE: Governing calculations of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, 2016 Census population estimates
 

The total number of people eligible to participate in DACA is much higher. The Migration Policy Institute estimates that only 68 percent of "immediately eligible" youth have applied and been approved, and more than 600,000 additional immigrants could potentially become eligible once they turn 15 years old or meet education requirements.

Immigrants from Mexico account for the vast majority of recipients -- about 81 percent of total participants since the program’s inception.

DACA’s fate further carries major implications for school systems. Nearly 4 million children of unauthorized immigrants were enrolled in K-12 U.S. public and private schools in 2014, according to Pew Research Center estimates. That’s more than 7 percent of all K-12 students nationally. Immigration advocates warn that ending the program could deter families from enrolling students in school.

The Department of Homeland Security announced it would no longer process new DACA applications after Tuesday. Current recipients seeking to renew their status must do so by Oct. 5., and renewal lasts for two years.

 

DACA Recipients, Renewals by State

State Individuals Initially Approved Renewals Approved Total
Vermont 42 162 204
Guam 59 352 411
Montana 72 164 236
Virgin Islands 94 204 298
Maine 95 334 429
North Dakota 98 260 358
West Virginia 117 200 317
Alaska 138 419 557
South Dakota 252 311 563
Puerto Rico 325 1,080 1,405
New Hampshire 367 599 966
Hawaii 558 1,740 2,298
Wyoming 621 520 1,141
District of Columbia 764 1,049 1,813
Rhode Island 1,229 1,733 2,962
Delaware 1,444 1,417 2,861
Mississippi 1,460 1,326 2,786
Louisiana 2,049 2,219 4,268
Iowa 2,798 2,780 5,578
Kentucky 3,062 2,786 5,848
Idaho 3,132 2,694 5,826
Nebraska 3,371 2,970 6,341
Missouri 3,524 3,407 6,931
Alabama 4,270 3,584 7,854
Ohio 4,442 5,124 9,566
Connecticut 4,929 5,882 10,811
Arkansas 5,099 4,255 9,354
Pennsylvania 5,889 8,178 14,067
Minnesota 6,255 6,236 12,491
South Carolina 6,406 5,382 11,788
Michigan 6,430 7,443 13,873
Kansas 6,803 5,647 12,450
New Mexico 6,815 5,236 12,051
Oklahoma 6,865 5,771 12,636
Wisconsin 7,565 6,298 13,863
Massachusetts 7,934 10,854 18,788
Tennessee 8,340 6,950 15,290
Utah 9,711 7,474 17,185
Maryland 9,785 10,917 20,702
Indiana 9,840 8,076 17,916
Oregon 11,281 9,610 20,891
Virginia 12,134 13,272 25,406
Nevada 13,070 11,771 24,841
Colorado 17,258 14,302 31,560
Washington 17,843 16,275 34,118
New Jersey 22,024 25,106 47,130
Georgia 24,135 21,804 45,939
North Carolina 27,385 22,327 49,712
Arizona 27,865 23,638 51,503
Florida 32,795 41,526 74,321
New York 41,970 53,693 95,663
Illinois 42,376 37,039 79,415
Texas 124,300 110,050 234,350
California 222,795 202,200 424,995
Figures don't include accepted applications submitted but not yet approved. Another 7,244 individuals and 54,228 renewals were approved for recipients from states not reported in the data. SOURCE: Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services data current as of March 2017