LOS ANGELES (March 25, 2013) — In light of President Obama’s commitment to continue a program to allow undocumented youth to obtain work permits and to be safe from deportation, the Asian Pacific American Legal Center, a member of the Asian American Center for Advancing Justice, along with Orange County Dream Team, Western State College of Law Immigration Clinic and Public Law Center will host a free workshop on March 30, 2013 to help undocumented immigrant youth apply for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status.
“If you are an undocumented youth and Asian American or Pacific Islander, you are not alone. There are an estimated 37,000 undocumented AAPI youth in California,” said APALC president and executive director Stewart Kwoh. “We encourage you to come forward and let us help you apply for deferred action.”
Since DACA was announced in August 2012, Orange County Dream Team, Western State College of Law Immigration Clinic, and Public Law Center and APALC have assisted more than 400 DACA applicants through monthly workshops in Orange County.
“It is the OCDT’s belief that free DACA application services are an indispensable resource for all undocumented communities, and we encourage Asian American and Pacific Islander youth to take advantage of this opportunity and take action to overcome the challenges imposed on our communities,” said Hairo Cortes of Orange County Dream Team.
According to the latest data from the Department of Homeland Security, the top Asian countries of origin for DACA submissions are South Korea and the Philippines. However, the largest number of undocumented Asians in the U.S. are Chinese, followed by Filipinos, Indians, and Koreans. “As an Asian American DREAMer, I know the challenges of coming out of the shadows. I believe the DACA process can help as we continue to fight for relief for all of our loved ones.” said Anthony Ng, an Asian American DREAMer leader and policy advocate with APALC.
Not everyone can apply for DACA. Eligibility criteria include:
• Arrived in the United States before your 16th birthday
• Be under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012
• Have continuously resided in the United States for 5 years before June 15, 2012 and at the time of application to USCIS
• Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012 or your lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012
• Currently be in school, have graduated high school, or obtained a general education development certificate (G.E.D.), or be an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States
• Have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety
• Pass a background check
The free DACA workshop will be held on Saturday, March 30, 2013 at Western State College of Law, 1111 N State College Blvd., Fullerton, CA 92831 from 1:00-5:00pm. No appointments necessary, however, the public is encouraged to arrive early. Volunteers and attorneys will provide application review and answer questions on the DACA process.
Call one of the following language hotline numbers if you have additional questions: Chinese: (800) 520-2356; Khmer: (800) 867-3126; Korean: (800) 867-3640; Thai: (800) 914-9583; Vietnamese: (800) 267-7395; English/Tagalog/Spanish: (888) 349-9695. Applicants will be responsible for the USCIS processing/filing fee of $465.
The Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC), a member of the Asian American Center for Advancing Justice, is the nation’s largest Asian American legal and civil rights organization and serves more than 15,000 individuals and organizations every year.
Founded in 1983, APALC advocates for civil rights, provide legal services and education, and build coalitions to positively influence and impact Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders and to create a more equitable and harmonious society. Through direct legal services, impact litigation, policy analysis and advocacy, leadership development and capacity building, APALC seeks to serve the most vulnerable members of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (NHPI) communities while also building a strong Asian American and NHPI voice for civil rights and social justice.