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PNS Daily News - September 20, 2017 


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MN Dreamers to Congress: Please "Do the Right Thing"

People in Minneapolis also rallied against Trump immigration policies in November 2016. (Fibonacci Blue/Wikimedia Commons)
People in Minneapolis also rallied against Trump immigration policies in November 2016. (Fibonacci Blue/Wikimedia Commons)
September 5, 2017

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Thousands of young Minnesotans are wondering what it will mean if, as expected, President Donald Trump announces his intention today to end DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

DACA is the Obama-era program that gives temporary legal status to law-abiding students who were brought to the U.S. as children. Nearly a million Americans have received DACA status, almost 10,000 in Minnesota.

Juventino Meza is one of them. He is a research director of Navigate, a nonprofit that helps immigrant students regardless of legal status. He calls the repercussions of Trump's decision "vast and numerous."

"It's likely that people lose their identification, their driver's license; their ability to have a job legally, their ability to own cars and homes," he laments.

Meza says Navigate will hold a 2:00 p.m. news conference at the State Capitol today, followed by a 4 p.m. rally.

He wants families to remember Minnesota passed its own Dream Act. So, even if DACA ends, high school graduates can still attend public colleges and universities and apply for financial aid in Minnesota.

Uriel Rosales Tlatenchi was a junior at the University of Minnesota in 2012, when DACA was announced.

"I was trying to figure out how I am going to work," he says. "Has all the work that I put into college, and trying to get through it, is that all going to be for nothing?"

Tlatenchi says DACA was a huge relief. The first thing he did was apply for a driver's license.

Now he is a college graduate with a family and a good job.

"I just want to let people know that these are our lives," he adds. "We live this every day. It's time for people, and people in power, to do the right thing, and to let us live our lives. Let us be able to be safe, in this country that we call our own."

Dreamers and their allies are vowing to take the fight for a Dream Act to Congress.

Laurie Stern, Public News Service - MN