Despite Trump’s attempts, DACA won’t end March 5. But Dreamers are left waiting for final decision.
Over the past semester, The Daily Texan and UT’s Chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists have been covering how the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and the decision to rescind it has affected The University of Texas students.
In September, President Donald Trump announced his administration would rescind the program that gave nearly 800,000 young undocumented immigrants temporary permits to pursue work and education. Trump set a date for the rollback – the United States would no longer distribute the two-year renewable permits starting March 5.
But on Feb. 13, a judge in New York issued a nationwide injunction, effectively blocking Trump’s administration from ending the program at least for the next several months. Policy analysts said a ruling likely won’t come until June or July. In the meantime, DACA recipients are able to renew their permits.
As the deadline approached, we revisited the students we’ve profiled in order to get a pulse on how UT’s community of DACA students felt about their situation.
Here’s what they had to say about the time leading up to the deadline and the injunction:
Back in September, UT freshman Yanelly began weighing her options. Her family lives in Brownsville, which you can reach by going through a Border Patrol checkpoint. Her DACA permit was going to expire shortly after the March 5 deadline, meaning she wouldn’t be able to go back home because she could face deportation at the checkpoint. With DACA in jeopardy of ending, Yanelly had to decide whether she’d continue to chase her dream of studying at UT Austin or if she’d return home.
She headed back to Brownsville in December.
Listen to how the injunction has affected her, here:
Read her full story, here.
UT sophomore Kevin said his DACA permit is crucial to him and his family. It’s allowing him to pursue a degree in international relations and global studies and have a job, which he uses to help provide for his family. He said he’s getting frustrated with the continuous DACA postponements. The worst part, he said, is not knowing what will happen to him.
Listen to Kevin explain what these last several months have been like for him, here:
Listen and read Kevin’s full story, here.
Advertising junior Lizbeth has been working harder than ever since September. She said her father is pushing her to be as close to perfect as possible because he doesn’t want “anyone to have any reason to take anything” from her. Trying to be perfect is difficult, Lizbeth said, especially when she’s faced with the possibility of losing everything she’s worked for. She said she feels like there’s an expiration date on her citizenship, and it weighs down on her.
Listen to what Lizbeth has to say about her dreams “expiring”:
Read about how Lizbeth has grappled with being an undocumented student throughout her life, here.
The past several months have been nerve wracking for Daniela, a Latin American studies junior. We last spoke with her in September, when Trump announced the rollback of the Obama-era program. She said she’s grateful the courts pushed the date back. But she added the move only offers a temporary relief for DACA students. Daniela said she’s tried to channel her worries and stress into something positive like activism. It’s important, she said, to focus on mobilizing the youth, turning out the vote and volunteering for organizations like JOLT, a Latino advocacy group.
Listen to Daniela talk about the her last several months, here:
Read the original article, here.