Dreamers get reprieve, their parents don't - Tucson News Now

Dreamers get reprieve, their parents don't

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The Department of Homeland Security has signed an order rescinding an Executive Order signed by President Barack Obama in 2014 which would have given status to parents of Dreamer children.

"Dreamers" are young people who were brought to the United States by their parents before 2010 but who have not achieved US citizenship or resident status.

President Obama gave the children the ability to stay in the country and not face deportation in 2012 if they went to school, served in the military, held a job and did not have a criminal record.

The order is known as DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which the DHS did not touch.

However, the order known as DAPA, for the parents, was challenged in court by 26 GOP governors and never took effect.

Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly, in signing the order, said "there is no credible path forward" to litigate the policy, thus ending it.

"It's just saying if you had any hopes, stop having those hopes," said Patricia Mejia, a Tucson immigration lawyer. "It's not going to happen."

It appears rescinding the order could open the door for deportation of those parents.

"There are no guarantees here, we don't know what's going to happen," Mejia said.

"You have to warn them."

Many of the DAPA parents live in fear but many of their children now live with that same fear.

"It could tear families apart," Mejia said. "Every day they leave the house they don't know what they might find when they come back."

Marcko, a 19-year-old Dreamer and college student who lives with his family on Tucson's west side, says they can't give in to that fear.

"I think we have to work harder, break stereotypes, go to work, stay in school and work at the same time and achieve our goals," he said. "We have to prove we deserve this and much more."

Marcko, who doesn't want to give his last name to protect his family, says the president is a topic of conversation among his friends, many of whom are also Dreamers.

"We help each other," he said. "We share a lot of the same goals."

For him, one of the goals is to work for the government, something he sees irony in.

"I want to help people and I think that's a good way to do it," he said. "I thought about law, but that's so expensive."

Marcko is working to become a US citizen, as is his mother.

"She just got her date after waiting 22 years," he said. "I know some people who have been waiting 40 years and still don't have a date."

But while there is still some optimism about becoming a citizen, there is still some concern.

"Who knows when I might wake up and they say no more DACA," he said. "But you can't let that stop you."

But for many it's still hard. 

"Do you rent an apartment? Do you buy a car? Do you own a pet? Are you going to be here next year?" are all questions Mejia says they must face every day. 

"For us, it's not even a consideration but for these people, they have to think about that," she said.

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