The Opinion will be part of the event, where DACA will be one of the main themes

This Sunday, a Democratic presidential forum will be held in Cal State LA specifically aimed at Latinos, where immigration, health, education and economic security issues will be discussed, among others.

However, and despite the fact that the Latino vote will be of great importance in the next elections, only five candidates will participate. They are Bernie Sanders, Julian Castro, Tom Steyer, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg.

“We invite all the candidates who qualified for the October debate and these were the ones who confirmed,” said Diana Colín, director of the CHIRLA Fund – one of the sponsors of the event.

Projections for the presidential elections of 2020 indicate that Latinos will constitute the largest racial or ethnic minority group of the electorate, which represents a little more than 13% of eligible voters throughout the United States.

DACA: one of the main themes

Multiple events were held this week in support of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), in several cities of the country as it is currently in the Supreme Court, where the judges will determine whether or not to proceed.

University student Jairo Barba, beneficiary of the program, said that President Donald Trump's decision to end the program already affects thousands of young people under DACA.
"We can't concentrate, we're like in a limbo, like hanging on a fragile twig," said 25-year-old Barba.

Jairo Barba with a partner during a rally they held in favor of DACA on Tuesday at San Francisco State University. (Supplied)

He says he expects the next president to focus not only on DACA beneficiaries but also on the undocumented who were left out of the program, either because of their age or economic reasons.

If I had the front presidential candidates, Barba said he would ask them:

“In case DACA is revoked, what is the alternative to help the DACAmentados, to protect them from deportation? and how do they plan to help young people who did not benefit from DACA? ”

The fight for comprehensive immigration reform is another main issue that the DACAmentados want to win since they usually live in mixed migratory status homes, where there are often undocumented parents.

Gaby Hernández, who identifies herself as an undocumented woman with DACA, said the immigration issue goes beyond this program aimed at the undocumented population with more education and impeccable records.

"There are important factors that influence beyond identifying a good or bad immigrant," he said.

Gaby Hernández, 29, is a DACA beneficiary and organizer. (Supplied)

He said that if he could ask the presidential candidates something, it would be: “By assuming the presidency, will you reverse all the immigration-related executive decisions made by Trump? Will the classification of undocumented immigrants end by extending citizenship to everyone regardless of their history with the judicial system? ”

Hernandez said this question is a combination of everything he often hears from the immigrant community.

“Trump's executive decisions really impact a lot of people, not just DACA. (There are) Muslims, refugees and TPSians (among others), ”said Hernández. "The problem is bigger."

The director of the CHIRLA Fund said that in California there is the largest group of Latino voters, however, it is not being paid according to demographics.

“In the forum all candidates will receive at least one immigration question and maybe not only from DACA but from those who are affected by the immigration issue,” said Colín.

Forum sponsors include the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs in Cal State LA, ABC7 and the Latino Legislative Caucus Foundation of California; Opinion is also listed as one of the invited media.

The forum will be televised this Sunday by ABC7 from 10:30 am.


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