This is our home, and nobody can deny that. We are ever-present and we are here to stay.
The people of our great nation have cast their vote, and we welcome our new president, Donald Trump. We know that there is fear and anxiety for what is to come with his presidency, but we must remember that Donald Trump is a business man. He knows that the profits outweigh the losses in opting out of a mass deportation.
We, as a community, must not panic nor leave the country. We have called Iowa our home for many years, and it will remain as such. There is much talent, entrepreneurship, labor, community involvement, economic power, and deep community ties within our undocumented community. Many of us have lived here for decades, most of which have been without any protection or work permit. If DACA were to be taken away, it will not break us. Our community’s most valuable asset is our perseverance. We beat all the odds against us. We have #UndocuIowans teaching in Iowa schools, working in financial institutions, working with domestic violence victims, starting their own businesses, buying houses, and so much more.
Statement from Monica Reyes, Co-founder and Lead Activist for DREAM Iowa:
“I knew, when I applied for DACA, what I was risking. I knew that it is a temporary program and that any new president, or even current President, could end the program at any time. I gave the U.S. government the history of everywhere I have lived, where I have gone to school, where I have gone to the doctor, where I have gone to church, a scan of all of my fingerprints, and a photo of my face. Basically, everything but a blood sample. I would officially be in the system. Knowing all of this, I mailed my DACA application because I have been and continue to be confident that the risk is worth taking. I was able to benefit in so many ways through DACA. I know what I have to offer, and the value of our community. I am confident that our government will choose not to deport people like myself. Some day, we will have citizenship.”
DREAM Iowa will continue doing DACA workshops, building the teachers/counselors/advisors network, doing know your rights workshops, developing Undocu101 toolkits, advocating for #UndocuIowans, and, most importantly, we will continue to empower #UndocuIowans.
Donald Trump has acknowledged that the immigration system is broken. Republicans have NOT said that they will not fix the system. There is opportunity for change. We know that we are far too great of an asset to be targeted for removal from this country.
This is our home, and nobody can deny that. We are ever-present and we are here to stay. Let’s turn all of this fear, sadness, anxiety, and/or stress into something positive. Let’s turn all of it into positive energy and resilience.