The Biden administration on Wednesday released a final rule to fortify the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a move that comes as the immigration program remains in legal limbo.
The regulation, which takes effect on Oct. 31, is meant to protect DACA by codifying the program and replacing a 2012 memo that first created it. The Obama-era program currently offers work permits and protection from deportation to more than 600,000 undocumented immigrants.
“Today, we are fulfilling our commitment to preserve and strengthen DACA by finalizing a rule that will reinforce protections, like work authorization, that allow Dreamers to live more freely and to invest in their communities more fully,” President Joe Biden said in a statement, referring to young people who were brought into the U.S. and have remained without legal status.
Biden went on to directly call on Republicans on Capitol Hill to move for a legislative solution.
“I will do everything within my power to protect Dreamers, but Congressional Republicans should stop blocking a bill that provides a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers,” Biden said. “It is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do for our economy and our communities.”