Community Members Reach Out to Undocumented Youth

Some older undocumented immigrants are concerned that President Obama's June 15 announcement will eventually be a let down for undocumented youth. Many immigration advocates are holding meetings for youth to stress the fact that they have to protect themselves in case the laws don't work out in their favor.

Dr. Jim Young, chancellor emeritus of the Kern Community College District, told the source that the announcement is a "great first step" and during the two-year reprieve students will be able to find work and save up money to attend college.

However, many of the immigration advocates do not share Dr. Young's enthusiasm, and are are concerned that not each immigrant youth will be considered for this law, despite what their situation was. According to the Monterey Herald, Cesar Lara, executive director of the Citizenship Project in Salinas, has been helping young immigrants determine what the law may mean for their futures.

Lara believes that it may be easier for undocumented immigrants who recently graduated high school to be considered, but harder for others who have been working as migrants for the past few years to acquire the proper paperwork necessary for consideration. He told the source that the president's announcement reminds him of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, in which dozens of applicants were deported after sending in the wrong paperwork. Although there is no way of telling what the future holds for undocumented immigrants, Lara told the source that he will continue to help them.

"We're slowly trying to figure out what that's going to mean, the mechanics of it, so we can ramp up the community outreach," Lara said.