'Only home I know': Milwaukee dreamer reacts to new federal rule aiming to protect DACA

’Only home I know’: Milwaukee dreamer reacts to new federal rule aiming to protect DACA

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- At two years old in 1999, Alondra Garcia migrated from Mexico to the United States with her family. 

About 15 years later, she became a dreamer.

"Milwaukee is the only home I know, the only home I remember," Garcia said.

A dreamer is a recipient of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration program. 

DACA was created while President Barack Obama was in office to allow hundreds of thousands of unauthorized immigrants, who arrived in the U.S. as children, to live and work without fear of deportation.

"My dad was telling me, reassuring me this was going to be the best thing that could ever happen to me, and I took his word for it, and it has been ever since," Garcia said.

Garcia said DACA has allowed her to build a life in Wisconsin as a Milwaukee Public School (MPS) teacher, a tax payer and a contributor to the community.

Yet, she said everyday is filled with uncertainty. 

"Knowing that at any moment, you know, we could lose what we work so hard for because of our status," Garcia said.

The Biden Administration is moving to protect DACA from the legal challenges that threaten its existence.

A rule by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will codify the program into the federal government's code of regulations.

"It's a step in the right direction," Forward Latino National President Darryl Morin said.

Morin told CBS 58 that the rule will allow dreamers to feel safe again, but there's more work to be done. 

He said he's waiting on Congress to allow DACA recipients to obtain legal status.

"It's the least we can do, to let these children adjust their status, and to let them stay here safely and without fear," Morin said.

For the moment, Garcia said she feels more at ease with the new rule, but it's not enough.

"If our politicians, our government, really do value their people, immigrants are part of that people," Garcia told CBS 58.

The rule is expected to take effect on Oct. 31.

CBS 58 reached out to several Republican members of Wisconsin's Congressional Delegation for comment, but did not immediately get a response.

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