On Tuesday, A
ttorney General Jeff Sessions announced
plans to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an Obama-era program that has allowed nearly 800,000 young people who came to the US as children to stay, work, and live in the country.
Instituted in 2012, DACA grants recipients an employment authorization document, which allows them certain protections to work in the US. Over the past five years, 91% of DACA recipients have found employment and are working for companies across the US, according to a recent report from the left-leaning Center for American Progress (CAP).
Besides the human cost a DACA rollback could cause repercussions to the national economy that would be felt in every state.
Using CAP data, Business Insider created a map (below) that shows the Gross National Product and number of workers each state stands to lose by ending DACA.
The organisation predicts that, over the next decade, the national GDP could take a $US460.3 billion hit by rescinding DACA. California and Texas may feel the largest blows to their GDPs, with $US11.6 billion and $US6.2 billion in potential annual losses respectively.
Another study by CAP found that a repeal could cost about 700,000 DACA recipients their jobs and employers $US6.3 billion in employee turnover costs. In the past week, several tech executives, including Mark Zuckerberg and Tim Cook, have voiced their opposition to the Trump administration’s decision.
In total, 10 states in favour of an end to DACA — Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Tennessee, Texas, South Carolina, and West Virginia — may stand to lose more than $US8 billion annually in GDP.
DACA-eligible workers tend to have higher-skilled, higher-paying jobs than undocumented immigrants, who are ineligible for DACA, the Migration Policy Institute found in a recent analysis. For example, DACA recipients are two to three times more likely to work in sales and office jobs, and less likely to work in construction and maintenance jobs.
As The New York Times notes, a typical DACA recipient came from Mexico at 6 years old and lives in Los Angeles.
By 2019, DACA recipients (known as DREAMers, a name that comes from a 2001 bipartisan legislation that aimed to lay path for their citizenship) will start to lose their protections, paving the way for deportations.