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Dreamers react to new DACA ruling, urge Congress to take action

Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 9:07 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Immigration advocates and Dreamers in Mississippi are pleading with President Joe Biden and Congress for help after a federal judge recently ruled DACA illegal.

“It is emotionally taxing to go to these processes of trying to do everything right, and then constantly having this red tape in front of you,” said Maria Zamora who fought back tears as she talked about the new DACA ruling.

On Friday, a federal judge ruled that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals is illegal. This ruling also will bar new applicants from applying.

The program was established in 2012 to provide temporary protection to undocumented immigrants who were brought to the US as children, known as Dreamers.

”I can’t even imagine people just applying and they were just getting to the point, ‘Maybe I can have a real job after this.’ I can’t imagine how they feel to have that hope and then have that hope torn at their feet. It is terrifying,” Zamora stated.

Currently, Mississippi has more than 1,200 Dreamers. Corena in part of that group. She has been a DACA recipient since her senior year of high school.

Thanks to the program, she is currently a full-time employee and has a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering. “

We are all trying to find a way to have a stable life and a happy life here. We do a lot and try to help our communities and we volunteer. We are normal tax paying citizens. Other people don’t know we have DACA until we have the confidence to tell them,” she confessed.

President Biden says the U.S. Department of Justice intends on appealing the new court decision, but the 24-year-old also urges Congress to act and provide the protection to Dreamers. 

“I want there to be a permanent solution for us to get on a legal path to get citizenship,” she stated. “Not something that we are just constantly waiting on every two years to see if they will still have this program or I am still going to be able to stay in the country.”

The Immigrant Alliance for Justice and Equity of Mississippi released a statement saying, in part, “This is just more compounded trauma by the government. People’s lives are on the line, and politicians are using our people as pawns and scapegoats in their political games.”

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