EXECUTIVE ACTION 2014
On November 20, 2014, President Obama announced his “immigration accountability executive action,” which includes a series of measures that reform the immigration system. The series of executive actions range from temporary immigration protections for many unauthorized parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents to highly technical regulatory proposals to fix outdated visa provisions.
Overview of the Immigration Accountability Executive Action
The President announced efforts to retool critical aspects of the immigration system—how we enforce immigration laws, how we process immigration benefits, how we encourage further business innovation, and how we welcome immigrants to this nation. The President authorized the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to significantly expand its use of deferred action to provide temporary protection from removal for millions of unauthorized immigrants currently in the U.S. This will be accomplished through expansion of the current Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, as well as the creation of a new deferred action program, Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA).
Moreover, the administration enacted other enforcement measures, including a new, department-wide enforcement priorities memorandum that provides greater direction to all agencies to focus attention on national security threats, those with criminal convictions, and recent unlawful entrants. DHS is replacing the controversial Secure Communities program in favor of a new model of federal/state/local cooperation that focuses on convicted criminals rather than all unauthorized immigrants encountered by local authorities. DHS will further consolidate its approach to border security, developing new task forces to coordinate the numerous federal actors at the southern border.