CHELSEA (CBS) — Dalia, a “Dreamer” who was brought to Chelsea from Mexico when she was only two-years-old, said the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, better known as DACA, opened doors for her.
“I remember being in my kitchen at home, watching the news with my mom and she literally burst out crying, like, hugging, just about everything I could have,” said the 22-year-old who refrained from giving her last name.
Thanks to the program which protects young immigrants who are brought to America illegally as children from deportation, Dalia is now attending classes at Bunker Hill Community College and has a job. But, she worries that her dreams will soon be put on hold.
Dalia said that English was her first language and going back to Mexico would feel like going to a foreign country.
On Tuesday, President Donald Trump is expected to eliminate DACA with a six-month delay, potentially giving Congress enough time to come up with a legislative fix.
The move would impact the roughly 800,000 “Dreamers” who live and work in the United States. Hundreds of thousands of them pay taxes.
“We have doctors, we have people who have bought their first homes, have 401ks, engineers, people in Texas helping out, it’s really heartbreaking,” said Dalia.
Massachusetts politicians were quick to condemn the move, Monday, ahead of the President’s announcement.
Speaking to WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe at the Labor Day parade in Marlboro, Baker said he does not want to see the Obama-era program dismantled.
“Well I’m hoping the president doesn’t repeal the DACA program, I’m hoping that he continues the DACA program,” said Baker, a Republican. “I know there’s been a lot of back-and-forth on this issue but my hope is that he continues to operate the program on a go-forward basis.”
Trump vowed to get rid of the program the day he took office.
Bay State Sen. Elizabeth Warren is also opposed to getting rid of DACA. She said at Boston’s Labor Day Breakfast that “America should keep its promises” and Congress should act.
“We can pass a law to say that DACA is permanent, and the president has no power to roll it back. We not only can do that, we should do that,” she said.
Fellow Democratic Sen. Ed Markey has also spoken out about protecting the “Dreamers.”
And Boston Mayor Marty Walsh thinks it would be a bad move.
“I think it’s a smokescreen and I think it’s a sad statement about our president and what he’s doing here,” Walsh said. “I think it shows that he doesn’t have a plan when it comes to immigration.”
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports