NEW YORK, NY – As Congress and the White House spend the next two weeks attempting to reach a fair compromise that addresses the status of nearly 800,000 affected DREAMers, New American Economy will spend the next two weeks highlighting the economic contributions of DACA recipients and the DACA-eligible.
The DACA-eligible population earns almost $19.9 billion in total income annually, according to research from New American Economy (NAE). In some states—such as California and Texas—these young immigrants earn billions of dollars in income ($4.9 billion and $3 billion, respectively), making up a significant part of each state’s economy. Similarly, in New York and Florida, DACA-eligible populations earn over $1 billion. A full breakdown of DACA-eligible incomes can be found here.
To highlight just how DREAMers are making real contributions to the economy, NAE has collected hundreds of immigrant stories from entrepreneurs to rank-and-file workers that keep businesses running. One such story comes from Jesus, a research assistant at Johns Hopkins University. He came to Maryland from Mexico with his family in 1987, when he was five years old. His parents worked hard to provide the bare necessities for their four children, his late father cleaning malls, and his mother as an office building janitor. Jesus graduated high school just as the Department of Homeland Security instituted DACA, offering the chance for employment—and the opportunity to help create a better life for himself and his family. He plans to attend college, major in communications and, one day, to buy a house for his mother.