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North Alabama DACA recipient reacts to Supreme Court ruling that preserves program

The woman told WAAY 31 she has been in the US for 20 years.

Posted: Jun 18, 2020 6:11 PM
Updated: Jun 18, 2020 10:27 PM

Thousands of immigrants brought to the United States as children are now safe from deportation after the Supreme Court blocked the Trump Administration's attempt to end deferred action for childhood arrivals, or DACA.

WAAY 31 talked to Evelyne Rivera, woman who was brought to the US from Mexico when she was 4 years old. She said finding out the court's decision to not end the DACA program has her relieved for not only herself but also others in the community. She explained how she felt waiting for the decision.

"An emotional roller-coaster. A lot of anxiety fear, anguish, sleepless nights, and some days where you just feel numb about everything," she said.

Rivera is a DACA recipient and the North Regional Organizer for the Alabama Coalition of Immigrant Justice.

She said the program, which was started in 2012, has given her many opportunities.

With DACA I'm allowed to work, if I wanted to continue my education, Rivera explained.

The program allows people brought into the United States as children the opportunity to apply for a temporary status that shields them from deportation, but it does not provide a path to citizenship.

Rivera said she knows more than two  dozen other "Dreamers" in the area who don't make their status known, but are also relieved by the decision.

"They're afraid for people to know they're Dreamers because they're afraid of people threatening them, to deport them, or to deport their families more than anything. I think the majority of them are more scared for their families than themselves," she said.

The Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling will preserve the program for now. President Trump will now have to go to a lower court with a more robust justification for ending the program.

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