New findings released from survey about, and created by, undocumented youth


Findings from our recent survey, “In Their Own Words: A Nationwide Survey of Undocumented Millennials”, have been released today!

About the survey: It is one of the largest surveys to date on any segment of the undocumented population in the U.S. The survey provides new insights related to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, life after DACA, and the experience of “coming out” as undocumented, as well as a first-of-its-kind look at the civic engagement and political incorporation of undocumented youth, among several other important topics. The survey attracted 3,139 responses nationwide, of which we have confidence that 1,472 of those responses were provided by undocumented young people between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five. The survey was fielded online in two phases during late 2013 and early 2014. Read more here.

Selected key findings from our survey:

Just over two-thirds of respondents (69%) report having their education delayed because of their undocumented status.

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DACA’s $465 Bi-Annual Recurring Fee Imposes a Significant Burden

Screen Shot 2014-05-20 at 11.19.11 AMRespondents, on average, identify $200 as being an affordable DACA renewal fee. Paying for DACA is a family and community expense with just over half (51%) of respondents reporting that they paid for their fees on their own.

The recurring nature of DACA application fees is an increasingly large financial burden. 36% of respondents report that the costs associated with their first DACA application caused a delay in applying for the program—the average length of this delay was three months. 51% say that a $465 fee to renew DACA will impose a financial hardship on themselves or their families. This financial hardship, coupled with the hard deadline for DACA renewals, could very well impact DACA retention rates.

Undocumented Millennials Are Highly Politically and Civically Engaged
Many respondents do not remain in the shadows when it comes to political participation and civic engagement. 41% of respondents participated in a political rally or demonstration compared to just 6% of voters surveyed in the 2012 American National Election Study (ANES). In other words, respondents were 7 times more likely to have participated in a rally or demonstration than average American voters.

A Path to Citizenship or Relief from Deportation?

When asked which is MOST important, a path to citizenship or relief from deportation, 14% choose a path to citizenship, 28% choose relief from deportation, but 57% choose “Our community deserves both and should not have to choose one or the other”.

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Read more about these and more findings at:


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Categories: Publications

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