President Obama announced Thursday executive actions that could remove the threat of deportation and grant work permits to millions of undocumented immigrants. This move would be similar to the 2012 action the president took which authorized young people who came to the United States as children to remain legally in the country.
Under Obama’s reform, immigrants who are parents of U.S. citizens and legal residents could be protected, if they pass a criminal background check and have lived in the U.S. more than five years.
While Congress has stagnated for years on creating immigration reform that changes laws and a path to citizenship, this would create new policy that is estimated to impact up to 4 million people.
Reaction has varied within the undocumented community. While some say this will bring the relief they’ve been waiting for, others say it’s not enough.