ATLANTA (AP) - President Barack Obama announced a policy shift in June that allows certain young people brought to the U.S. illegally to avoid deportation. But the response from leaders of the so-called DREAMers movement has been lukewarm.
One of them is Viridiana Martinez, who has been on the front lines in the debate over immigration reform, organizing protests and getting arrested in acts of civil disobedience. She says the policy shift is all political theater.
Others have decided to apply for the program despite having misgivings, lured by the chance to get a driver's license and qualify for in-state tuition in some states and to get a work permit.
The government began accepting applications Aug. 15. The Migration Policy Institute estimates that as many as 1.7 million people could be eligible. By Oct. 10, about 180,000 people had applied and nearly 4,600 applications had been approved.