Thousands of Nevadans fearful as DACA, TPS deadline nears

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Some 20,000 Nevadans are waiting to see whether or not they will be told to leave the country as two key immigration policies hang in limbo.

Aranza Marmolejo came to the U.S. when she was 3 years old. Now, she’s a freshman at CSN studying to become a nurse.

“So, Senator Heller, we are calling on you to take a stand,” said Assemblyman William McCurdy, Nevada Democratic Party chairman.

The debate over Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, and Temporary Protected Status for nationals of certain countries is reaching a head.

“We’re not doing anything wrong,” dreamer Aranza Marmolejo said. “We have to go through so much vetting and, you know, we get good grades, we stay out of trouble, and you know, then we get it taken away from us, and it’s like, are we not good enough?”

This past September, President Trump overturned former President Obama’s executive order creating the DACA program and gave Congress until March to create a replacement.

Democrats are pushing for a clean Dream Act vote and Nevada’s Mark Amodei has joined some Republican colleagues pushing for a vote by the end of the year.

And in a statement, Senator Dean Heller tells 8 News Now, he’s committed to working with his colleagues to find a permanent solution to keep dreamers in the U.S.

For Carlos Majano, his worry is different.

“I work at a casino, and thank you to God and to TPS, I’m able to do that with that work permit,” TPS recipient Majano said.

Through a translator, he tells 8 News Now, his family’s life would be ruined after spending the last 27 years in the U.S. and owning a home.

“It would mean losing my job, it would mean losing my house, my wife and our family depend on me,” Majano said.

Decisions on people in the U.S. with temporary protective status after leaving certain countries are expected in the coming months. 

Whether DACA or TPS, those left in limbo now are hanging on to hope.

 “I would like to believe that they do, but until they sign onto it, you know, it’s worth nothing,” Marmolejo said.

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