One year later, still no DACA solution

Concerns over the future of DACA
Updated: Sep. 5, 2018 at 8:08 AM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - One year since the White House announced it would phase out DACA there is still no permanent solution is in place.

The Deferred Action for Children Arrivals program protects thousands of young immigr ants from deportation, including many in the state of Arizona.

On Sept. 5, 2017, the Trump administration said it would roll back the program, giving congress six months to come up with a solution.

Federal rulings have kept the program alive for now. Most recently, a judge declined an injunction that would have ended the program immediately. It was a blow to a lawsuit led by Texas.

Mira Patel is a student at the University of Arizona, relying on DACA since it was launched in 2012. The economics major said she still remembers the moment the announcement was made.

"I couldn't really go to classes. I couldn't focus on much because I didn't know when the announcement was going to happen. Turned out that it happened on Sept. 5 that he rescinded the program. I remember immediately running to the center. We were all just sitting in the room crying," she said.

An immigrant herself, Patel was born in the United Kingdom. She said the past year has been like a roller coaster ride, but something she was expecting.

"I've always known this from the beginning of having DACA. That there's no sense of security," she said.

Patel said the recent ruling in Texas is a bittersweet victory for the DACA community.

"Everybody expected him to vote in the opposite way and to take DACA away. But I also don't feel completely sure and safe. I know that another judge can rule. I know that there can be another case. So, I never feel 100 percent safe. And I've learned that really the hard way this past year because it was taken away," she said.

Patel works at the UA Immigration Resource Center and said the past year the focus has been on keeping DACA recipients up to date on the court cases and how it affects them.

"I'm still in school. I've worked with my administration to create a scholarship that protects DACA recipients for now," she said.

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