Juan: If DACA ends, ‘a million lives could be impacted … I am one of those people’

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

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In a video testimony, Dreamer Juan Escalante says that “almost a million lives could be impacted” if Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is rescinded by the Trump administration. Because of DACA, over 800,000 immigrant youth can work legally, apply for driver’s licenses, pursue educational and career goals, and live free from the fear of deportation. “I am one of those people,” Juan says.

“Fundamentally, deep down inside, I consider myself an American,” Juan says. “That is because I’ve lived in the United States for the past 17 years, paid my taxes, worked hard, got an education, and grew up in this country.” But all of Juan’s hard work stands to get ripped away if DACA rescinded by Donald Trump, despite the program having overwhelming support from the American public, who favor both DACA staying and permanent legalization for undocumented immigrant youth. 

In the video, Juan asks immigrant rights allies to reach out to Congress to defend DACA and stand by immigrant youth. “I hope that you will reach out to your representatives, your senators,” Juan says, “and make sure you express your outrage. Because make no mistake, if this program ends, people like myself, hardworking individuals, could be next in Donald Trump’s mass deportation agenda. We could be sent back to countries that we no longer have attachments to.”

Juan reminds us that “we did not win the DACA program by just hoping that Congress would act. We won the DACA program because we took action.” Watch his powerful video testimony below, and click here to share on Facebook.