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What the DACA Phaseout Means for Workers and Employers

Christopher Plascencia won a promotion last month to personal banker at Wells Fargo & Co.; now he's worried the career advancement might become a hollow gain.

What the DACA Phaseout Means for Workers and Employers

The Compton resident has the job because of DACA, the program that protects from deportation nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants who arrived as children and allows them to work and attend school. But the Trump administration plans to wind down the program over the next six months.

“I obviously couldn’t have done any of this without the work permit we were issued,” said Plascencia, 22, who called President Trump’s decision “heartbreaking.”

“Being able to have that income definitely helped me to provide for myself and to help out my family as well,” Plascencia said.

DACA workers and the firms that employ them are faced with uncertainty after the White House said it would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program initiated in 2012 by President Obama.

Under the program, participants (so-called Dreamers) who were brought to the United States as children could receive a renewable two-year deportation deferral and work permits if they met certain requirements.

The Trump administration argued that the program was unconstitutional, was never intended to be permanent and that Congress now has six months to change the immigration laws and find a DACA replacement, if it chooses.

No new DACA applications are being considered, and those with permits expiring between now and March 5 have until Oct. 5 to apply for renewal.

A wide swath of the business community, led by major technology firms, is opposed to Trump’s move.

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