The Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) DACA Collaborative was formed in August 2012 to coordinate outreach activities and legal services to individuals eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The Collaborative consists of: Asian Americans Advancing Justice (Advancing Justice) affiliates, Advancing Justice-Los Angeles, Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus, and Advancing Justice-AAJC; the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF); the National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) and its affiliates, the Korean Resource Center (KRC) and the Korean American Resource & Cultural Center (KRCC); South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT); Chinese Affirmative Action (CAA); Chinese American Service League (CASL); South Asian Organizing Center (DRUM); Filipino Advocates for Justice (FAJ); South Asian American Policy & Research Institute (SAAPRI); and South Asian Network (SAN).
From November 2014 to December 2015, the AAPI DACA Collaborative reached out to roughly 80,000 undocumented AAPIs in four states, 20 counties and 30 municipalities. We were successful in educating community members about DACA, expansion of DACA, and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Permanent Residents (DAPA) initiative. Both expanded DACA and DAPA, which were announced in November 2014, have been blocked from implementation as the result of a lawsuit brought by Texas and 25 other states. The Collaborative has also been actively engaged in recruiting volunteers and developing new leaders in our communities.
The overall goal of the Collaborative is to increase application rates and establish high renewal rates for individuals from the Philippines, Korea, India, China, and Pakistan. In the long term, the Collaborative hopes to shift prevailing cultural attitudes on the plight of undocumented immigrants, increase community capacity to participate in immigration policy reform campaigns, and strengthen the organizing skills of AAPI youth and adults.