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DACA supporters to hold rally at Western High School in Detroit

Posted at 5:44 PM, Sep 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-04 17:45:04-04

Supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program are planning to hold a rally at Western High School in Detroit on Tuesday afternoon.

President Donald Trump is expected to end the the DACA program and giving Congress six months to fix it.

DACA grants work permits to undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children. Ending it would leave 800,000 people hanging in the balance.

One of the people attending is Juan Gonzalez, who is a DACA recipient.

"I love this country, this is my home," he said.

The 24-year-old is uneasy at the thought of President Trump ending DACA.

"I know I was born in Mexico, but I don't know much about Mexico."

Gonzalez came to Michigan when he was just a one-year-old.

"I know no other place, this is the only place I've known. I grew up here, my friends are here, most of my family is here."

He first realized the negative impact of his status was when he was a high schooler looking for a part time job.

"I worked my first day as a dishwasher, and the second day they asked me for my work permit or social security number, anything. Well, I don't have one and they had to let me go."

He also tried to join the military, but couldn't.

"I always felt that sense of patriotism to a country that I'm from, that's my home."

Juan and his older sister were born in Mexico, but his younger siblings were born in the US.

He worries if he is sent back, his whole family will to have move in order to stay together.

"I'd be a foreigner there," he explained. "I wouldn't be from there. I wouldn't know the customs and how life is lived down there."

Juan wants to be an immigration lawyer.

He works part time and attends Wayne State University.

In his spare time, Juan posts YouTube videos talking about the struggles of other DACA recipients.

"People don't know our stories," he added.

Juan has this message to the president.

"We're here and we love this country like anybody else."

The rally is being hosted by Michigan United and will start Tuesday afternoon at 3:30.