Dreamers are deeply integrated in the U.S.
Dreamers have grown up in America, have formed deep ties in their communities, and contribute tremendously in every state across the country. Many Dreamers have been able to earn an education and contribute to the workforce thanks to DACA; this program and its success help provide insight to the experiences of Dreamers as a whole.
On average, DACA-recipients arrived in the U.S. when they were seven years old and have lived here for more than 20 years. About a third of DACA recipients are enrolled in school, while hundreds of thousands more have graduated and are now working in every industry of the economy, including as nurses, teachers, and first responders.
For many Dreamers, America is home to family, including their U.S. citizen children, siblings and extended family. An estimated 1.5 million Americans live with a DACA-recipient, including 250,000 U.S. citizen children who have at least one parent protected by DACA; expanded to the larger Dreamer population, the numbers are likely much larger.
Dreamers also contribute significantly to the U.S. economy, paying an estimated $1.7 billion in state and local taxes each year and contributing $42 billion to GDP annually. Allowing Dreamers to adjust to legal status would increase these contributions significantly.
An estimated 1 million Dreamers are essential workers, almost half of the total Dreamer population. They play a particularly important role in COVID-19 response and recovery, especially in industries like healthcare, food services and production, and housing and facilities.
A pathway to citizenship for Dreamers remains an overwhelmingly popular bipartisan policy. Polling from late January 2021 shows that 83% of Americans, including 66% of Republicans, support a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers.