Maria Sotomayor, an Upper Darby Dreamer who was protected from deportation as a child through President Obama’s executive order, is trying to find ways to secure her own and her fellow Dreamers’ futures in the uncertainty of post-election America, writes Mike Newall for the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Like many other Dreamers – who are nicknamed as such because they meet the general requirements of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act – Sotomayor was brought to the United States illegally when she was a child.
This makes it the only place she knows and calls home. However, with the election of Donald Trump, who has vowed to undo the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy as soon as he takes office, her future here is at risk.
Sotomayor, a graduate of Neumann University, is doing all she can to protect herself and her friends. She is the youth organizer for the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition that has been working with other city immigrant advocacy groups to educate Dreamers and other young people on their rights in an America led by Trump.
“You can’t let fear motivate you,” she explains to the young people she advocates for. “You can’t let fear take over your whole body and life. You can’t live that way.”