A Change Is Gonna Come?

By Wendy Medrano, Michigan United

Immigration reform, simply put, is an issue that impacts everyone, and a fight that has been going on for years. But this past fight, it felt like the real thing. Essentially, hopes to keep immigrant families from being broken up rest for now with President Obama. Many young immigrants and their families celebrated in 2012 when he signed executive orders for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a variation of the DREAM Act. It granted temporary relief from the threat of deportation to some young people who had been brought the US as minors.

We had worked hard to win something sustainable for many undocumented people in the U.S. with the DREAM Act.  Unfortunately, it did not pass in the House. After that loss, we fought for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA, and the President gave it to us after an immense amount of public pressure was put on him. But that was not enough. We pushed to win the immigration bill in the Senate, and it passed with overwhelming support. But when it went to the House, the House version of the immigration reform bill went nowhere.

This did not stop advocates from fighting – it fueled us more.

The realization that we lost the immigration reform bill led to pushing President Obama to grant an executive order for Administrative Relief, which was an expanded form of DACA. President Obama said that we could expect an announcement on Administrative Relief after Labor Day weekend, but instead we received an announcement on a delay of the executive order for after elections.

It is September 2014, and we still do not have immigration reform. Instead we have millions of deportations, torn apart families, and broken promises. We cannot wait anymore, and we cannot be pushed around. The time is now to do the right thing.