New Immigration Policy Changes Lives of Many
President Barack Obama announced his new immigration policy Friday
ANCHORAGE - Friday, President Barack Obama announced his new immigration policy that would stop deporting young undocumented immigrants.
Under Obama’s new policy, people younger than 30 years old get a two-year deferral from deportation as long as they came to the U.S. before the age of 16, pose no criminal threat, and were successful students or served in the military.
“I have my family here and I don't want go anywhere else,” she said.
According to a Pew Research Center report, there are an estimated 10,000 undocumented immigrants living in Alaska alone.
Delgado moved to California from Mexico when she was just nine years old with her sister and mother.
“She wanted to us to learn, to have careers and she knew the opportunities were here,” she said.
She’s been in Alaska for three years with her husband, who is a U.S. citizen, and her three-year-old son.
Delgado says she's always been hesitant to apply for citizenship for fear of deportation, until now.
“I don't want to just be here, to just be here, I want to work, I want do something,” she said.
According to Lea McDermid, a local immigration attorney, it’s not amnesty.
“Its not a path to permanent residency or citizenship and it’s risky for someone who's not already in deportation proceedings,” McDermid said.
But she says it will allow immigrants to work.
“[They] just want to be productive members of society and they've been marginalized and not been able to do that,” she said.
Delgado says it's all she's ever wanted.
“To be told, no, because you're not from this country, is just frustrating because I know I could do so much if I was given the opportunity,” said Delgado.