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Bereans React to End of DACA Announcement with a Vigil

Bereans React to End of DACA Announcement with a Vigil

By Elijah Nicholson-Messmer

Many students, faculty, staff, and community members gathered at the steps of Hutchins Library on September 5th for a vigil and demonstration over President Trump’s recension of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Attendees were given laminated monarch butterflies. Some demonstrators held signs with messages such as, “Dream on,” “No Fear,” “You are here to stay” etc. SGA President Osvaldo Flores ’18, a DACA recipient who helped organize the vigil said, “We will fight today and continue fighting—but we do need your help. I ask that you stand up for all of the immigrants in this country at all times. Risk your privilege for us because, in a few months, we will be targeted even more by all of the anti-immigrant legislation. Call Congress and urge them to pass a permanent law that acknowledges us as citizens and not criminals and to stop playing with our lives, our mental health, and overall well-being.”
Adriana Núñez, a visiting instructor of Latina studies said, “Although opposition to DACA may feel overwhelming, there are tangible ways that you can support DACA and undocumented individuals. First, call or tweet at members of Congress and tell them to support legislation like The DREAM Act (S. 1615/H.R. 3440). Second, find out what’s happening locally. For example, a representative for Congressman Andy Barr holds office hours in Berea and in Richmond. Consistent presence at these meetings and other similar events sends a strong message,” Núñez added.
Professor Dee Hill-Zuganelli, who teaches Child and Family Studies said, “I want DACA students to know that we’re here for them. You can talk to us. You can be scared with us. You can cry with us if you’re upset. We’re all in this together trying to figure out what to do and how to best handle the situation.”
Regarding future plans for Berea DACA recipients, President Roelofs, who also attended the vigil said, “The wide variety of scenarios means quite a complex planning process as far as Berea College’s response is concerned, and that is underway, but far from complete.”

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