Immigrants with temporary humanitarian protections have new hope for a permanent U.S status.
Now, local DACA recipients are speaking out on what that means.
It’s been an ongoing issue in congress for years. House democrats introduced a bill last week, to provide a path for citizenship for young undocumented immigrants under the DACA program, the Temporary Protected Status, also known as TPS, and the Deferred Enforced Departure programs. If passed, the bill would allow 2.5 million people to apply for legal status.
“It was a secret and stuff like that…”
A secret millions of people in the U.S are living with right now, out of fear of deportation.
Which is why this DACA recipient wants to remain anonymous.
Because the future for undocumented people is up in the air, for some it’s triggered a sense of panic.
“I have a small child here and it was just kind of like i have to think about like if i get deported like what’s going to happen to him,” says DACA recipient from Moline.
The bill that would give daca and other undocumented immigrants a path that could lead to permanent status has lifted some of that anxiety.
“For us its just a sense of a sense of security, a peace of mind, ” says DACA recipient from Davenport, Idalia Villalpando. Villalpando came to the states when she was just 6 years old.
“I’ve been here for 28 years now this is the only country i’ve known this is my home.”
She’s a part of the DACA QC Coalition, which seeks to educate others about the struggles and determination to become citizens.
If the bill does pass, it would give about 1200 DACA recipients in the Quad Cities an opportunity to live without fear of being deported.
Republican analyst Alfonso Aguilar says it won’t be easy. Without border security, republicans will likely not support the bill.
“I think democrats are playing with the hopes and aspirations of the immigrant community,” says Aguilar.
Villalpando says until then the only way to help is by marching and sharing their stories.
“I think the most important thing is to talk to people that are able to vote. No one knows. Not a lot of people know our story and our struggles.”