If immigrant rights advocates sound less than enthusiastic these days, they have their reasons.
Israel Guerrero and his friends are disappointed by President Obama’s just-announced plan to provide relief for families who are in the US illegally.
Guerrero says, “I was happy but at the same time I was frustrated. I saw my friends whose parents’ couldn’t qualify. They were still under the worry of being deported.”
The president’s plan only provides protections for parents of U.S. citizens and legal residents who have been here for at least five years. They will be able to benefit from work employment authorization. Also in some states be able to get a driver’s license and social security number.
But for young adults brought into the U.S. illegally by their parents, the president’s plan will only help their family if they have a brother or sister born in the U.S.
Fidel Campusano laments, “Nothing was offered for parents of documented students.”
Some wanted the president to go further, but immigration experts believe the president wanted to be sure his order was on firm legal footing.
Delisa Bressler, a partner in Foster LLP, a leading immigration law firm says, “I think on both sides of the aisle there is wide acknowledgement that the system’s broken. And I know one of the balancing acts for him had to been the need to ensure that he was within his authority as the president of the United States to take executive action.”