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RGV Families Fear New Immigration Policies

4 years 2 months 2 weeks ago Monday, February 20 2017 Feb 20, 2017 February 20, 2017 9:14 PM February 20, 2017 in News

SAN JUAN - Communities across the Rio Grande Valley feel uncertain about their future with the president’s new executive order.

Resident Adrian Guerrero said his family came to Texas nearly 20 years ago. His parents moved in hopes for a better life for their children.

“I’m the only one in the family that has citizenship,” he said.

Guerrero is currently working on his masters at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. However, he fears for his siblings. They are currently able to live and work in the U.S. under the Deferred Action for Child Arrivals Program, for now.

It’s unclear how new immigration policies will affect the program, executed under President Obama’s administration.

Guerrero said his family isn’t the only one feeling the uncertainty. On Monday, families gathered to express their concerns to democratic congressmen in San Juan.

“We are delivering the message. We don’t know what gets done once they’ve hear that, but we must keep trying,” he said.

San Juan Mayor San Juanita Sanchez said people and organizations have expressed concerns about President Trump’s policies in city council meetings. However, she said she doesn’t know what to tell them.

“There’s nothing that’s telling them there’s going to be massive raids. There’s nothing telling the there’s not going to be any,” she said. “We want them to go about their daily lives, but definitely be on top of things and understand. Because even I and other elected officials, we’re trying to understand.”

Sanchez said uncertainty breeds fear which then leads to tension. She expressed these concerns to Senator Ted Cruz and other lawmakers during their weekend visits in the Valley.

“I think we’re all integrated in such a profound way that whatever is going to affect them is going to affect us all. On a personal level, as well as economic and the things that we do,” she said.

Sanchez hopes lawmakers understand immigration policies can have ripple effects across entire communities.

Guerrero agreed and said he’s not the only university student on edge.

“So even though they know they have a community behind them, they still don’t feel as safe as they used to,” he said.

The UTRGV master’s student hopes a better future awaits his friends and families of different immigration statuses. 

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