In the five years since DACA was enacted, an estimated 8,000 Wisconsinites have benefited from its protections, according to Voces de la Frontera. Now, many of those people are fearful of their future.
DACA has given one Verona teenager a job, a license and a sense of security. He’s been a beneficiary of the program for two years. He’s now scared he’ll lose all of that.
Juan Alvarez, 17, should be thinking about his first day of his senior year at Verona High School. He hopes to go to college next year to study political science and international relations, with dreams of becoming a politician.
“Hopefully getting a degree and finding a career and not necessarily having to struggle economically and socially in the way that my parents did,” he said.
But instead of thinking about his future today, he’s thinking about the future of DACA.
“i just feel so disheartened because I think the Madison community has always accepted me and my family and where we come from,” Alvarez said.
Like the 800,000 other so-called “Dreamers,” Alvarez came to the U.S. undocumented with his parents. They left their small town near Mexico City in search of a better life. For 16 years, they’ve called Wisconsin home.