COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Around 4,500 young Ohio immigrants who are now working here legally, have a driver’s license, and are able to go to college, could face deportation if Congress does not act in the next six months to pass a law to replace an executive order.
NBC4 spoke with two so-called Dreamers.
Nathali Bertran came from Peru and Elvis Saldias from Bolivia, both as undocumented nine-year-olds. They said in 2012 they registered through DACA, and are helping America as much as themselves.
“I do hold out hope! I feel like everyone thinks that we are contributing members of society, because that is what we are,” said Bertran.
President Trump rescinded former President Obama’s executive order called the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals that allowed nearly 800,000 young people in the US illegally, a way to be legitimate.
“I was finally able to come out of the shadows, it provided me with a social security number, a work permit and protection from deportation,” Saldias said.
Both now 25-year-olds are college educated. She is working as a local engineer and he works for a local large insurance company, both said they are taxpayers.
“You can’t see past the six month deadline. I cannot plan my life around that, my job life around that, it is just a very difficult scenario,” Bertran said.
“I am very much immersed in the American culture, and I consider it my home,” said Saldias. The difference he said is with other Americans is, “if I lose my job I don’t get unemployment, food stamps or the Affordable Care Act. “I don’t get any of those things.” Plus, when I went to college here I did not get financial assistance and worked to pay my way through school,” Saldias said.
Ohio Congressmen Pat Tiberi and Steve Stivers are co-sponsoring one of several replacement measures, theirs is called Recognizing America’s Children Act, or the RAC Act.