SF will help pay renewal fee for DACA recipients

San Francisco will help to pay the $495 renewal cost for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients, city officials said on Thursday.

Mayor Ed Lee’s Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs (OCEIA) will host a renewal workshop this Saturday to provide legal assistance and screenings for DACA recipients, also known as Dreamers. The workshop will take place at Mission High School from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The OCEIA will administer the funds to fully pay for DACA renewals, according to the mayor’s office.

The deadline for recipients eligible to renew with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is Oct. 5.

Mayor Ed Lee said in a statement that The City wanted to help the young Dreamers to prepare for the October deadline:

“We asked them to step out of the shadows to pursue a better life in America, and we need to honor our commitment to their cause. These individuals are diligent students and dedicated workers who have only known this country as their home. We are proud to pay for their DACA application fees and we will continue to advocate for comprehensive immigration reform in this country.”

Former President Barack Obama established the DACA program in 2012 to prevent undocumented children under the age 16 from being deported. The program allowed the children to remain in school and eventually be able work.

President Donald Trump announced earlier this month that he would end the program and called on Congress to act on DACA if lawmakers wanted to continue the program.

Supervisor Hillary Ronen said in a statement:

“When DACA is removed, it will be our neighbors, friends, and relatives who will be losing their basic rights. What kind of city would we be if we don’t step up to help them?”

Ronen added:

“Until we’re able to win back permanent protections for this community, we need to renew these young peoples’ work permits on our own so they can continue to go to their jobs, go to their schools, and remain with their families. San Franciscans value hard work and education, but most importantly we value our immigrant residents”

While the country still needs a comprehensive immigration reform plan, Supervisor Sandra Fewer said in a statement that the DACA program provided young individuals to “participate fully in economic and educational opportunities.”

The state of Rhode Island announced plans earlier this week that it will pay the $495 renewal for Dreamers who are eligible to reapply.