by Laura Conde
On Sept. 5, 2017, President Trump decided to end the DACA program, otherwise known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. DACA allowed many undocumented immigrants to work and live in the US – and his latest decision puts approximately 800,000 immigrants in danger of deportation. This decision caused an uproar all across the country, including at Pueblo.
A day after the DACA decision, Culturally Relevant teachers came together and hosted a DACA- themed workshop to further inform the Pueblo community, offer resources, and potentially make this situation more bearable.
During the workshop, participating students were guided through research activities, along with analyzation and discussion of the actual repeal decision.
The workshop provided a very accepting environment could voice their opinions.
The following quotes are from DACA students who have chosen to remain anonymous.
“It’s great [DACA workshop], it gives people an opportunity to become aware, people may know about it, but not exactly.”
Another student said, “I’m glad we’re having this [DACA workshop], students need to be educated, sometimes adults aren’t even aware of this topic.”
“I think it’s depressing, some of them [dreamers] came here as children, sending them to places they don’t know is cruel,”
“It doesn’t make sense, people come here for opportunities, if they don’t get any, what’s the point?”
“Students need to have a voice, human rights aren’t illegal, they just are.”
DACA will be phased out with an official decision from Congress in six months. As of now, no further DACA applications will be accepted and after Oct. 5, 2017 initial and renewal applications will be disregarded.
Aside from this, numerous resources exist to help the community express themselves and support this struggle.
A few options include, (1) Text “Resist” to 504-09, a “Resist-bot” can formulate your concerns and send a letter to the members of Congress. (2) A direct call to local officials can make an immense difference, Jeff Flake: (520) 575-8633, John McCain: (520) 670-6334, and Raul Grijalva: (520) 622-6788
“I think DACA activities teach students to be aware of their rights,” said Mendibles-Muñoz. “They become advocates and develop a network they can fall back on for support.”