U of I DACA recepients speak out against Trump's latest immigration propositions
President Donald Trump has released a list of requests in order for him to consider preserving DACA, or the Differed Action for Childhood Arrivals Policy. This is the Obama administration policy that protects young, undocumented immigrants from being deported who have been in the U.S. since they were children.
Nancy Ramirez Blancas has been in the country since she was one and now attends the University of Illinois as a DACA student. She doesn't like President Trump's latest list of requests in order to keep the program in place.
"It’s like I'm in a hostage situation,” Blancas said. “It just feels wrong and I would feel really guilty if these demands were passed just for me to stay here."
The DACA program started in 2012 and many recipients are students and workers. Since the president has announced his intention to end DACA, Congress has been given a 6-month delay to try and preserve the problem.
"He, now the president, and his team is saying we will let these kids go if…” CU Immigration Forum board member Ricardo Diaz said. “Then he makes honorous demands that he knows can't fly."
Meanwhile, the University of Illinois College Republicans say they are for comprehensive immigration reform, and think building a wall and limiting federal funding to sanctuary cities are a key part of that.
Blancas says those on the DACA program are hardworking and deserve to be here.
"A lot of the students that are DACA recipients are going for a bachelors or a master's degree or part of a program,” Blancas said. “So these are individuals that are going to go into the community and really, the community will benefit from them."
While elected officials are battling out immigration reform on the national level, Blancas says she and other U of I students are pushing for local leaders to work to pass a new type of student immigration act that doesn’t jeopardize other immigrants.