Locals Talk Immigration Policies
Just last week, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrested about 37 people in Middlesex County, NJ.
New Brunswick locals shared their thoughts on what immigration policies should look like.
According to DataUSA, there is about a 30% non-citizen population in New Brunswick.
With a high concentration of immigrants, New Brunswick, New Jersey has been affected by the recent revisions made to such policies.
Disagreements over how the Trump administration has handled border security and terminated the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Act (DACA) have caused the nation to become seemingly more divided.
NJ high school student, Henley Desir, says that the termination of DACA was a mistake and will negatively impact the country.
“That's a terrible idea, we should definitely not terminate the DACA, that's against the whole idea of human rights,” she said.
She also believes that undocumented immigrants are seeking help, and that the government should try to aid and accommodate them.
“All they want is to contribute right and they're just looking for asylum or sanctuary in America which is supposed to be the greatest nation,” Desir added.
Disputes over what to do with undocumented immigrants who live in the U.S. are also on the rise.
Michael Shay, a New Brunswick resident, believes that all undocumented immigrants should be deported and all people should come into the country the proper way.
“You come in illegally, you get either sent back or separated, whatever,” he said.
When asked whether the current administration is handling immigration policies correctly, Shay said “I'm fine with it.”
But other locals had different opinions.
Fernando Cumberbatch, also a New Brunswick resident, said that the current treatment of undocumented immigrants is inhumane.
“It's horrible, it makes no sense, it’s demeaning, it’s inhumane,” he said.
He concluded that the treatment is heartbreaking, especially because he went through the same thing when he was a young undocumented immigrant from Panama.
“It’s pretty devastating to see,” Cumberbatch added.
As far as the debate on whether undocumented immigrants should be able to work in the U.S., there were some mixed feelings.
Cumberbatch thinks that all immigrants should be allowed to work because “they mostly do the jobs that citizens don’t want to.”
But Shay believes that the United States has yet to address how difficult it is for immigrants to obtain a visa.
“Make the way to come into the country easier and its fine,” he said.
Cumberbatch was also asked how he felt about immigrants becoming legal United States citizens and he didn’t hesitate.
“As long as they're here you pay rent, you pay bills, you should be able to work like any other American citizen.”