Cindy Nava’s Historic Journey: Breaking Barriers at the White House

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recently reached its 11th anniversary, marking over a decade since its creation through an executive order issued during the Obama Administration in 2012. However, the program is currently frozen following a federal judge’s decision in Texas to block new applicants in 2021. This decision, seen as part of a Republican effort to permanently shut down DACA, has excluded nearly 400,000 people from the program. These individuals, known as “Dreamers,” were offered legal immigration status through DACA, providing them with access to better job and educational opportunities.

Cindy Nava, a beneficiary of the program and a U.S. citizen for two years, spoke about the impact of DACA in an interview with AL DÍA News. She emphasized the multitude of resources and life-altering opportunities that DACA has brought to those who have been a part of it. Nava, who now holds a presidential appointment within the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, stated that DACA has changed lives, communities, families, and the U.S. economy as a whole.

One significant benefit of DACA that Nava highlighted is the opportunity for recipients to qualify for early parole, allowing them to visit their home countries after years of disconnection. She also mentioned how DACA has allowed recipients to support their parents and grandparents during difficult moments, such as end-of-life situations, when families on the other side of the border faced the anguish of potentially never seeing their children again.

While a legal battle is underway to save, transform, or cancel the program, with DACA currently on pause, approximately 580,000 recipients have been able to continue renewing their status every two years. According to figures provided by the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy, DACA holders contribute nearly $42 billion to the U.S. gross domestic product each year and add $3.4 billion to the federal balance sheet. Nava emphasized that DACA recipients play an integral role in the fabric of the nation, contributing daily to communities, economic growth, and prosperity.

Nava also highlighted the expansion of eligibility for DACA recipients to qualify for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) programs, thanks to a clarification made on day one of the Biden administration. With access to FHA-insured mortgages, DACA recipients can receive support for affordable home financing, benefiting first-time homebuyers and those with limited means for a down payment.

As an advocate for DACA, Nava emphasized the need for a permanent solution and a pathway to citizenship for recipients. She shared her own experiences as an undocumented immigrant and expressed her belief in the enduring hope and resilience of immigrants who continue to strengthen the country. Nava sees DACA recipients and their parents as “DOERS,” contributing to various industries and professions and impacting lives on a daily basis. She called for collaborative efforts and optimism to work towards securing a permanent fix for DACA recipients.

In conclusion, after 11 years since the inception of DACA, it is crucial to ensure that recipients receive a pathway to citizenship. The program has had a significant impact on the lives of Dreamers, communities, the economy, and the nation as a whole. By providing opportunities and legal status, DACA has allowed individuals to thrive, contribute, and break the cycle of exclusion and hardship. The work to defend and support DACA continues, driven by the resilience and determination of immigrant communities.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *