By Beth Germano, WBZ-TVBy Beth Germano

BOSTON (CBS) – There is mixed reaction in the Boston area to the president’s executive actions on immigration, some feeling relief from deportation and other undocumented citizens saying they were left out. With his 3-year old son Christopher already an American citizen, Gonzalo Juarez feels the relief.

“It’ll help get him a job,” he told WBZ-TV through an interpreter. “He’ll be able to feed his family here, and send money back home.”

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Juarez fled El Salvador 13 years ago, but his illegal status made it difficult to find work.

The president’s executive order extends to the parents of children born in the United States, helping them obtain social security numbers and even a driver’s license. But Samantha, a Brazilian immigrant, says the president’s policy isn’t broad enough for her. When he extended protection to young immigrants in 2012 she missed the cutoff age and remains undocumented.

“It’s really hard working in the shadows. We’re afraid to drive to the grocery store because you don’t know if someone is going to stop you for some reason,” Samantha said.

Carlos Rojas Alvarez said his mother finally gained the status she deserves. Now 21, he was 5 years old when he left Colombia and worried in this country each day.

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“My entire life I’ve grown up with the fear in the back of my mind that at any time my mother would be deported. She has lived with that fear as well,” said Alvarez.

Alvarez is one of the so-called “dreamers” who gained youth immigration status after coming to the United States as a child. But because his brother was born in the U.S., his mother Beatriz can obtain legal status.

President Obama says the order is not amnesty or a path to citizenship, but begins to mend a broke system. Many are hoping that Congress will act for broader reforms.


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Beth Germano