BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The Supreme Court decision not to extend programs that would help stop families from being separated through deportation came as a shock for many on the Coast.
On Thursday, more than a dozen supporters of immigration reform came to rally around those who have no voice and vowed to continue the fight.
Melinda Medina is a U.S. citizen, but knows many who are not.
"They have to get up and go to work, fearing that they will never come back home. Fearing that it's the last time they are going to see their children," said Medina.
Medina works with the Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance, and hopes the meeting will keep hopes alive.
"Undocumented immigrants have their own voice, but they don't have the power," Medina said. "So, we need to unite with them because they pump money into our economy."
At meeting, members of other equal rights organizations on the Coast joined in to show their support.
The tie vote in the Supreme Court leaves in place the ruling by a lower court that said the Obama administration lacked the authority to protect up to 4 million immigrants from deportation without approval from Congress.
Mandy Vargas works with undocumented immigrants as a social worker.
"It's sad because there are so many families that I work with who were hoping that this decision would go through in their favor because they're living in fear right now," Vargas said. "And it's sad when you have your children worried about, is my parent going to be taken away from me today?"
According to Vargas, all people need is an opportunity.
"Many people say, why can't they just do it the right way? Well, this was the opportunity for so many to be given the chance to do it the right way," Vargas added.
Aida Bone of Biloxi because a U.S. citizen in 2007.
"We all came here with the same dreams and I know there are so many other people that are just eager to make America better and they just want a little opportunity to be able to show that," said Bone.
Mississippi has some 200,000 Latinos, many immigrants, along with significant numbers of immigrants from Africa, Asia, Europe and the Mideast.