1. Background
  2. Immigrants & Refugees

Dreamer Protection Legislation Comparison

By Hannah Graf Evans, November 8, 2017


A comparison of four different Dreamer protection bills – the BRIDGE Act, SUCCEED Act, RAC Act, and Dream Act. FCNL considers the provisions outlined in the Dream Act to be the best option available for Dreamers.

FCNL's Priorities for Legislation

The Friends Committee on National Legislation advocates for Congress to pass legislation that offers immigrants who grew up in the United States and are undocumented – also known as Dreamers – an opportunity to work towards citizenship. FCNL’s priorities for Dreamer protection legislation include:

  • Enacting a path to citizenship for the largest number of young immigrants who entered the United States as children and grew up here.

  • Outlining a path to citizenship that is swift and easy to navigate, without requiring Dreamers to fulfill excessive or harsh requirements.

  • Ensuring that Dreamers and other immigrants’ safety and opportunities to access the U.S. immigration system are not threatened.

  • Enacting protections into law without exacerbating existing injustices within the U.S. immigration system, which currently separates families, keeps too many people in detention, and infringes upon the civil and human rights of immigrants and citizens alike.

Download a PDF of the comparison chart.

  1. Dreamer Legislation Comparison (pdf, 258 KB)
Pertaining to these priorities, we put together a comparison of four different Dreamer protection bills – the BRIDGE Act, SUCCEED Act, RAC Act, and Dream Act. FCNL considers the eligibility provisions and pathway to citizenship outlined in the Dream Act to be the best option available for Dreamers. It is the only bipartisan bill with an identical version in both chambers.
Chart comparing Dreamer Protection Legislation

Definitions

CPR: Conditional Permanent Residency – This is a conditional status that requires individuals to stay in compliance with certain requirements. Both the SUCCEED and RAC Acts have bars for inadmissibility, deportability, and revocation of CPR status.

LPR: Lawful Permanent Residency – once applicants have accomplished certain requirements they can apply for LPR/a green card and then follow process to naturalization and citizenship.

Other Considerations

All of the bills have bars for inadmissibility around certain convictions of misdemeanors and felonies. Bars under SUCCEED are the most stringent. Of all the bills, the Dream Act is the most forgiving for prior run-ins with the criminal justice system, although the RAC Act has a slightly better provision regarding multiple misdemeanor convictions.

Under SUCCEED, individuals must also sign waiver barring them from most immigration relief – e.g. most work or protective visas, or obtaining a green card through family sponsorship – if terms of CPR status are violated.

Unrelated to Dreamers, SUCCEED also waives the right for individuals who overstay their visas to see an immigration judge and bars them from almost all other immigration relief. It also curbs the authority of the President to grant humanitarian or other kinds of parole to certain populations. SUCCEED also would prolong family separation by needlessly barring Dreamers from sponsoring their children or spouse after obtaining LPR status, even though LPRs are generally eligible to sponsor these family members.

More detailed analysis

National Immigrant Law Center, 2017 Legislation to Protect DACA Recipients/Immigrant Youth: https://www.nilc.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Dream-2017-legislation-compared.pdf

American Immigration Lawyers Association Policy Brief, How Dreamer Protection Bills Measure Up: http://www.aila.org/infonet/how-dreamer-protection-bills-measure-up

Hannah Graf Evans

  • Legislative Representative, Immigration and Domestic Policy

Hannah Graf Evans lobbies for compassionate immigration policies. Our immigration system should empower immigrants and the American communities to which they belong, lift up the voices of border communities, and ensure adequate protections for refugees, asylum-seekers and victims of trafficking. Hannah co-chairs the steering committee of the Interfaith Immigration Coalition, made up of over 45 faith-based organizations.