SIU DACA students speak out on Trump's decision

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Illinois is one of 15 states suing the Trump administration. They want to stop the president from ending former President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or "DACA" program, that protects nearly 800,000 young immigrants from deportation.

Many people support President Donald Trump's decision to phase-out the program, but not everyone agrees with the move, including Republican Governor John Kasich of Ohio. He says it's not fair to punish young immigrants who are in the U.S. only because their parents brought them here.

It's also causing a lot of stir for some students at Southern Illinois University.

Jonathan Ramirez's family came here when he was really young.

"It gave me a shot a life, it gave me security," Ramirez said.

Martha Osornio said, "Without it, I wouldn't be here. Without this work permit, without this driving license, I wouldn't have been able to come here and have a second shot at life. And a lot of students would probably agree with me – coming here to an institution to study and fulfill your dreams is why your parents sacrifice everything."

Another student, Oneida Vargas, came to the United States from Mexico with her family almost 20 years ago. She was awarded the Chancellor scholarship which only goes to 20 incoming freshmen.

Vargas explained, "It's not like I'm just here just barely passing by with my grades, or just taking the opportunity I was awarded for granted. I'm putting it to use as much as I possibly can."

Giovanni Galindo explains what America means to him, "It really is the land of opportunity. In Mexico it would be hard for me to go to college at all. I would just be working for the rest of my life. Probably a job I don't love. And here I am able to pursue something that I do love."

Galindo has a love for the arts, cinema & film. "I love telling stories, I also believe in Jesus and God, so I like to tell stories that open the question for that because that's where I find my hope in. That's why things like this they don't worry me too much because I know God is in control."

Every single one of them said they have been in this country for the majority of their lives and they want one DREAM– citizenship.

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