The US House of Representatives has supported immigration bills for Dreamers, Farm Workers
President Joe Biden signed a memorandum enhancing the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on his first day in office. His administration has given more people from Venezuela and Burma Temporary Protected Status (TPS). President Biden built on this by proposing comprehensive immigration reform, including a path to citizenship for DACA (or Dreamers) and TPS recipients, as well as the 11 million undocumented immigrants still living and working in the United States. However, finding enough bipartisan support to pass comprehensive immigration reform is a long shot. As a result, the administration has implemented a "multiple trains" strategy to transfer specific parts of the agenda forward.
The American Dream and Promise Act ("Dream Act") and the Farm Workforce Modernization Act ("Farm Act") were both passed by the House on March 18, 2021. The Dream Act will grant Dreamers, certain TPS recipients, and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) recipients, a total of two million people, a path to citizenship. The bill passed the House with a bipartisan vote of 228 to 197. The Farm Act was approved by a greater bipartisan margin of 247 to 174.
It will offer conditional legal status to undocumented farmworkers who pass background checks and pay a $1,000 fine. This status could be continued indefinitely as long as the person continues to work on a farm. Long-term migrants would have a route to permanent residency, the H-2A visa process would be streamlined, new wage requirements would be implemented, and agriculture would be required to use E-Verify.
The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the vital existence of many DACA, TPS, and DED beneficiaries' work, especially in healthcare, as well as undocumented workers' work, particularly in agriculture, ranching, and the dairy industry. Regardless, some Senators are concerned about legalization, refugee plans, and the rise of people detained at the southern border.