Proposed immigration reform bill does not include all hoping for citizenship
For 15 years Monica Roy told Action 4 News that she has looked over her shoulder, worried that at any moment, she could be separated from her children.
"All of my children were born in America, Roy explained. I've always worried. If I get deported, what happens to them? Will I ever see them again? Those are all scary thoughts."
Roy said she chose to come to the United States over a decade ago for security.
"It's bad in Mexico, Roy said. I'm better protected here. Plus, I can work and earn a living to take care of my children.
Roy is not alone in her quest for a better life.
Millions of other immigrants have fought for years for some type of immigration reform.
While it looks like that might finally happened, it comes with its own set of challenges.
"They want to say that they've secured the border, especially in the high risk areas, and when that is done they can allow them (immigrants) to stay here. But first they have to go through a process," San Juanita Campos said.
San Juanita Campos is an Immigration Attorney in Weslaco.
She told Action 4 News that the process does not involve everyone.
"The bill that's been introduced is focusing on agriculture workers, high skilled workers, and family based immigration. Right now you have 4-million people waiting for visa's that were petitioned by relatives, Campos explained. There aren't any available. And those applying for deferred action or the dreamers will be included."
She said, while there is still a long road ahead people can start to prepare for the process by gathering legal documents.
Some acceptable documents include:
Lease agreements, utility bills, medical records, and children TMs school records.
Congressman Ruben Hinojosa sent over this statement regarding the proposed immigration bill:
"We are closer than we have ever been to a solution that fixes our dysfunctional immigration system once and for all. From the beginning, the CHC has urged the Gang of Eight to develop a solution that provides an earned path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country. We are pleased this principle is a core tenet of their bill, and that our other priorities of keeping families together, providing a workable solution for the business community and preserving our values as Americans are included.
We are especially pleased the legislation includes the strongest proposal that has ever been presented to Dreamers, in that these bright minds will finally have the expedient path to citizenship that they deserve. In our local colleges and universities we have hundreds of Dreamers who are eager to become part of our workforce and contribute to our economy. The University of Texas-Pan American in my district has one of the highest numbers of Dreamers attending classes in the nation. Dreamers are enrolling in institutions of higher education because they want to be educated and they want to contribute to the United States of America. "
There's no doubt that the issues at hand are complex, but the Senate bill proves that common ground exists. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to proceed in the same spirit of bipartisanship that allowed this legislation to be developed. The American public expects us to pass comprehensive immigration reform, and our economy needs us to act as soon as possible. The CHC will remain vigilant throughout this process, so that Congress delivers the kind of reform our country and our community deserves."