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Although Applications Are Reopened, Many Are Ineligible For DACA Program

The latest court ruling on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program allows thousands of undocumented immigrants to apply. But some Indiana applicants are not eligible for the program. 

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DACA protects undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children. Approximately 640,000 immigrants have enrolled in the program nationally, around 9,000 of those in Indiana. 

Lawrence Sharp helps immigrants apply for DACA. He’s executive director of The International Instituteor La Casa in Gary. He said many of the applicants he sees do not qualify for the program because of the many requirements.

"Which are, you have to be born [after] June 15, 1981. You have to have entered the U.S. before June 15, 2007," Sharp said. "And physically present from June 15, 2012 or have been discharged from the Coast Guard honorably."

Other requirements include being born on or after June 15, 1981, having a diploma or GED or be currently attending school. The fee to apply for DACA is $495. 

Contact reporter Paola at pmarizan@wnin.org or follow her on Twitter at @pmarizan.