LAS VEGAS, Nevada. As reports flood in about Trump making deals with Democrats to protect the Dreamers who rely on DACA, the dreamers themselves continue to remain in limbo, unsure whether lawmakers will come through and whether their protected status will continue. According to the New York Times, president Trump claims that DACA recipients shouldn’t worry about facing deportation as the DACA program is being actively wound down. However, for the 800,000-people protected under DACA, this promise does little to offer comfort about the future. Will they be able to work? Will they be able to get driver’s licenses? Will they even be able to stay? Meanwhile, it appears that lawmakers are continuing to hammer out a deal that would protect Dreamers.
One aspect of DACA could impact more than just the youth who are protected under the program. According to the National Immigration Law Center, DACA did more than just protect qualified immigrants from deportation. It gave them work visas and also granted them the ability to get driver’s licenses in every state. This not only granted the Dreamers the ability to drive to and from work, but it also gave Dreamers a path to legally get their driver’s license—thus increasing the overall safety of drivers on the road.
According to the Huffington Post, one out of every five fatal crashes in the country is the result of an unlicensed driver. Some immigrants may not apply for licenses out of fear of deportation. DACA allowed immigrant youth to come out of the shadows—and to learn how to drive. After all, in order to be a licensed driver in the U.S., you must pass several tests, including a practical driving test to get your license. Requiring immigrants to undergo this screening increases road safety for everyone.
However, now that DACA is winding down, immigrants may once again need to retreat into the shadows, meaning that individuals who may have qualified for driver’s licenses may no longer feel safe applying for one. Worse, it isn’t clear what will happen to individuals who are currently protected by DACA once the program winds down. Can these youths keep their driver’s licenses? Will they return to the DMV for regular screenings when their licenses expire?
It isn’t clear what the future holds for the dreamers. This impacts everyone: from employers who have hired Dreamers, to those of us on the road who rely on everyone being properly licensed and sanctioned to drive.
Drivers have a responsibility to be safe behind the wheel. If you’ve been in an accident with an unlicensed driver, you may have rights under the law. George R. Fusner is a accident lawyer in Nashville who works closely with victims of car accidents to help them seek justice. You may only have a limited amount of time after a crash to seek compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Visit us at https://gfusnerlaw.com to learn more about your legal options.