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PNS Daily News - September 20, 2017 


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New Mexicans Denounce DACA Phase Out by President Trump

New Mexico's 8,000 DREAMers face an uncertain future now that the DACA program is being rescinded by the Trump Administration. (americasvoice.org)
New Mexico's 8,000 DREAMers face an uncertain future now that the DACA program is being rescinded by the Trump Administration. (americasvoice.org)
September 6, 2017

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – More than 8,000 young, undocumented immigrants in New Mexico will lose protections from deportation unless the president and Congress can make a deal to protect them.

Following through on a campaign promise, President Donald Trump on Tuesday terminated DACA – the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – program created by the Obama administration.

Adriel Orozco, an attorney with the New Mexico Immigrant Law Center, says the U.S. has invested millions of dollars in DACA recipients that will be wasted if they are forced out of the workforce.

"And I think that the hardest part for people of DACA right now is just really being out and proud, and working and going into careers, and not being fearful of being deported,” he states. “And a lot of people are sort of being put into a position where they're feeling like they might have to go back into the shadows."

Many of the almost 800,000 so called DREAMers across the country have grown up in the U.S. after being brought here illegally as children.

According to the Center for American Progress, DACA recipients in New Mexico contribute nearly $68 million to the state's economy.

New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas says he's optimistic lawmakers will find a compromise to protect DREAMers despite a decade-long effort by congressional Republicans to block such legislation.

Many DACA recipients in New Mexico are college students, and Orozco says they now face an uncertain future.

"This administration has been really good at generating fear amongst the immigrant community,” he points out. “You know, I can say that it's heart wrenching, but it's not something the immigrant community hasn't seen before."

The announcement Tuesday means the government will stop processing any new DACA applications, giving Congress until March 2018 to possibly save or revise the existing policy. In the meantime, all existing DACA work permits will be honored until their expiration.


Roz Brown, Public News Service - NM