DACA applications rejected after arriving past deadline due to mail delays: report

DACA applications rejected after arriving past deadline due to mail delays: report
© Getty Images

The applications to renew the status of dozens of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients were denied after they arrived past the deadline due to delays with the U.S. Postal Service, The New York Times reported.

At least 33 DACA recipients in the New York region had their applications denied because the paperwork arrived after the Oct. 5 deadline, despite having sent it weeks in advance, according to the report.

ADVERTISEMENT

The U.S. Postal Service admitted that there had been an “unintentional temporary mail processing delay in the Chicago area.” But U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) officials refused to accept the delayed applications.

“According to U.S.C.I.S. regulations, a request is considered received by U.S.C.I.S. as of the actual date of receipt at the location for filing such request,” a spokesman for the agency told the newspaper in a statement.

“U.S.C.I.S. is not responsible for the mail service an individual chooses, or for delays on the part of mail service providers.” 

Advocates told the newspaper that 41 people in Chicago had been impacted by the postal delays.

Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-Ill.) told The New York Times that applicants had sent their paperwork weeks ahead of the deadline, but it hadn’t arrived until after it passed.

“Because somebody else did not do their job correctly we are taking innocent young immigrants and making them deportable. That is unacceptable,” Gutiérrez said in a statement.

The DACA program provides individuals living in the U.S. without legal permission who were brought here as children protections from deportation, as well as work permits.

The report comes as DACA recipients are unsure of the future of the program.

President Trump announced in September that his administration would rescind the program with a six-month delay, giving Congress the opportunity to pass legislation to extend it.

But efforts to pass a DACA bill have stalled and the future of the program is up in the air as Republicans and Democrats battle over what should be included in a bill.