HARTFORD--Dozens of advocates and some immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally celebrated President Obama’s executive action regarding immigration at a rally at Hartford’s Center for Latino Progress on Friday.
Trinidad Lira and Patricia Huerta say they will benefit from the action. The couple came to the United States 17 years ago and one of their sons is a U.S. citizen. The president's decree will allow both of them to defer deportation and legally work. "That's what we were waiting for all these years. And like I said, it's an amazing opportunity for us,” Lira said.
Suidy and Jesslyn Jimenez say their mother could have stayed in the United States under the president’s action, but she was recently deported to Guatemala.
"I really hope that my mom can return soon because she still has the constant fear of being murdered at any moment,” Suidy Jimenez said.
Not everyone is thrilled about the president’s move. Dana Morrison of New Britain is unemployed and worried about new competition in the job market.
"He doesn't seem to have a grasp on it that we're in a bad economic situation right now. There’s not enough jobs for the people who are here. And that fact that, when they come over they're not going to be able to get work even if they wanted to. So, that means they're going to put a strain on the social fabric of our communities,” Morrison said of the president.
According to the Pew Research Center, in 2012, immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally made up 3.5 percent of Connecticut’s population.