A Dreamer's Note From Her Worried Mom Illustrates The Impact Of Rescinding DACA

"Why in the world would you want to stop these hard working bosses?"

The current administration's decision to end DACA — an Obama-era policy that has made it possible for nearly 800,000 undocumented children of immigrants to live, work, go to school, or serve in the American military without fear of deportation — has dominated the news cycle for the past 48 hours. However, it can still be difficult to fully understand the impact this choice stands to have on thousands of people, should Congress not intervene and pass a law that would permanently protect undocumented immigrants.

That's part of the reason why a tweet shared by DACA recipient Karla Martinez on September 5 has gone viral — it provides a closer look at how ending DACA could negatively affect countless families across the country, families who live, work, and pay taxes in the United States.

Martinez's tweet features a photo of a sticky note her mother, Tania, left for her in their California home on the morning Martinez was scheduled to take her driver's license test. The note, which was written in Spanish, translates to, "Here's money so you can pay your test, good luck baby. I'm left with my heart broken, they canceled the permit that you have." Without mentioning the DACA decision, Tania made it clear in just a few words how worried she now is for her daughter's future.


"This is my mom giving me her hard earned money to take my written test for later today. Waking up to the news about #DACA was rough...." Martinez wrote along with the photo.

According to BuzzFeed News, the mother-daughter pair has been living in the Southern California for the past 12 years after emigrating from El Salvador with the hopes of establishing a better life. Martinez was just six at the time — the average age of a DACA recipient — and she is now a freshman at Cal State University Long Beach, studying to become an ER nurse.

"I started crying when I read it," Martinez tells the outlet of Tania's fearful note. "I know my mom didn't know what to say to me because when I got accepted it was the biggest deal ever. We're both shocked and scared."

The 18-year-old adds, "My mom handles all my immigration papers and helps me with all these documents so seeing the note and money for my driving test that she helped me prepare for after everything we went through to get here was a lot."

In an effort to provide a better life for her daughter Tania has worked cleaning houses and hotel rooms, but all of that effort will mean nothing if DACA is rescinded and the duo is forced to return to El Salvador.

Though Martinez struggled with whether or not to share her mom's heart-wrenching message with the world (and with most others in her life who were unaware of her DACA status), she ultimately decided it was something people needed to see, and provided some additional background info in a series of subsequent tweets.

The teen says she was woken up by her mom crying after yesterday's DACA announcement, and is encouraging people to try and realize the impact this heartless decision can have on her family and countless others. "I'm not asking you to feel sorry for me, but just to take action and help the rest of us to continue our path to education," she concludes.

Though not everyone is sympathetic to Martinez's plight, her tweets have been shared and liked thousands of times and she has received plenty of support. As one Twitter user put it, "Why in the world would you want to stop these hard-working bosses?"

Martinez's story also struck a chord with other DACA recipients, several of whom reached out to let her know they have her back.

"I had to wear my sunglasses in class because I was crying reading all the responses," Martinez tells Buzzfeed regarding the outpouring of support she has received. "I always felt isolated because no one really knew that I was different in that way."

In yesterday's announcement the current administration said, per CNN, it will continue renewing permits for anyone whose DACA status expires in the next six months, giving Congress time to act before any currently protected individuals lose their ability to live in the United States, but no new DACA permits will be granted.

Per The Hill, 14 states and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit on September 6 challenging the administration's decision to roll back DACA. "The president has made numerous statements on the campaign trail and in office disparaging Mexicans," Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson explained in announcing the suit. "We allege the president's own statements make clear that Dreamers are being targeted based on their national origin."


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