Student Jesus Castro Discusses DACA

Friday, September 08, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE -- In high school, Jesus Castro used to toil alongside his father, a roofer. It was grueling labor, the heat searing as noxious fumes enveloped them. Castro had crossed the border from Mexico when he was 5 years old, along with his three brothers, and his parents had always encouraged them to go to school and earn good grades so “we wouldn’t have to work like animals, slaving away like them,” said Castro, now 22.

After he graduated, he filed for DACA — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — a program enacted in 2012 that allowed him to receive protections against deportation (renewable every two years) and made him eligible for a work permit. He’s a full-time student at San Francisco State University, studying Political Science, and he works half-time as a program assistant in the city’s Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs.

“That sense of persistence and wanting something better has always been present in my family,” Castro said. “I’m not only speaking for myself, but for all undocumented immigrants.”