Hundreds rally at the University of Iowa to defend DACA program

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IOWA CITY, Iowa - Hundreds came out to show their support for the nearly 800,000 immigrants across American whose future is now in limbo.

"There are too many people whose livelihoods, their futures, their dreams everything that this country has to offer them, all of that is on the line," said Emiliano Martinez, student at the University of Iowa.

President Trump announced it would end DACA. The program protects young undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.

Undocumented immigrants like 20-year-old Mauricio Diaz from a small town near Iowa City. His parents moved Diaz to the U.S. from Mexico when he was three-years-old to give him a better life.

"I love this country. I can't imagine leaving it," said Diaz.

Diaz says the DACA program has given him opportunities that wouldn't normally be available.

"The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals has given me a chance to work and be protected from deportation," said Diaz.

However, that could be taken away, Diaz could be deported to a country he says isn't home or worse, "I`m scared for my family. I'm scared because I don`t want to be separated between the ones that are citizens and the ones that are not."

President Trump has given congress six months to replace the program with some else. Diaz and others say they're hoping their voices can be heard at the rally and lawmakers in D.C. can get another plan passed.

"I just have to keep staying hopeful," said Diaz.

The Department of Homeland Security has stopped processing new applications for the program, but permits will still be renewed if they expire in the next six months.


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