Supreme Court deliberates DACA: Tech students represent in D.C.

Supreme Court deliberates DACA: Tech students represent in D.C.

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The Supreme Court could decide the fate for nearly 1 million young, undocumented immigrants. They're currently protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program.

"It is not as simple as the law, this is so much more than that. This is a question of humanity, it is a question of fairness. These are Americans in every way, but their status," Define American Communications Director Kristian Ramos said.

More than 100,000 DACA recipients live in Texas. For seven years, these young Texans have been able to fully contribute to their community.

"This is their home, this is what they've known. A lot of them you don't even know their recipients until they tell you," Texas Tech senior Ailyn Escobar said.

According to the American Immigration Council, DACA recipients in Texas paid nearly $320 million in state and local taxes in 2016.

"They're not just bummin' it," Escobar said.

Now the government wants to terminate the Obama-era program that protects them from being deported.

"When we say we're going to do something and we ask people to come out of the shadows and they do so and comply with the law, we should honor that," Ramos said. 

Four students from Texas Tech went to Washington D.C. to represent. Desiree Castorena is a freshman. Both of her parents are immigrants. If she would have been born before they came to the United States, she would be a DACA recipient. 

"I can easily put myself in their shoes, so that's what makes it so surreal for me," Castorena said. 

Ailyn Escobar has been in the United States her whole life. She said many of the DACA recipients she knows have been here their whole lives too, so not much is different. 

"They do everyday activities that you consider American, I guess," Escobar said. 

The goal of the D.C. trip is to bring awareness and encourage people to use their voice.

"You try to play it safe usually when you talk about this topic, and I don't think it should be like that," Castorena said. 

"Right now there are so many different types of people here, and we all come together, so being able to bring that sense of community back to Lubbock would be a real goal," Escobar said.

"We want to humanize this conversation, at the end of the day this is about our country, this is about the bond we have with each other as Americans," Ramos said. 

The Supreme Court will issue a decision on DACA by June.

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