Arkansan DREAMer says rescinding DACA is ‘an attack on my community'

Local DACA recipients not backing down, continuing their fight

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The Trump Administration announced Tuesday that it will be rescinding the DACA program, leaving almost 800,000 undocumented immigrants across the United States with uncertainty in the country they call home.

Now one day later, the effects are still being felt right here in Arkansas by many DREAMers.

"I feel like this is something I've been warning people about,” said Alejandro Wolfe Espinosa Villegas.

“All I see on Facebook is people posting that we're taking their welfare and benefits," said Sandra Carmona Garcia. "That is not true, we don't qualify for that.”

The brunt of President Trump's decision isn't sitting well with those who benefited from it, including two DACA recipients living in Arkansas.

"DACA has allowed me to go school," Garcia said. "I have to pay out-of-state tuition, but, either way, I was able to get a job and pay for school."

She hopes by sharing her story, others will do the same.

“Right now, tomorrow, I'm planning to go to one the high schools and have a discussion and answer any questions they have. Just so they can peace of mind right now, but more importantly so they know what to do next,” she said.

Garcia is a college student and has been a DACA recipient since 2013.

“It's definitely an attack on my community,” said Villegas.

He feels targeted by Trump rescinding the program that has helped many immigrants stay in America.

Villegas was brought to this country when he was just 6 years old.

“Everyone thinks that citizenship is so easily accessible," he said. "That’s a common misconception that Americans have."

Around Arkansas and all over the country, DACA recipients are fasting, protesting and pushing officials to find a solution.

Villegas said he was fired from his job at a local Starbucks over issues with his DACA status.

"I've handed coffee to Tom Cotton, Mike Huckabee, and those people who believe so strongly that me, a transgender immigrant Latino man, doesn't deserve to have any rights,” he said.

DACA recipients aren't alone in this fight.

Heavy hitters in the tech world like Microsoft and Starbucks aren't backing down, but instead are backing their DACA employees.

Microsoft vowed to take legal action if the government tries to deport their Dreamers.  

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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