Entertainment

Anyclip from prod – After Denying It, HUD Declares Federal Housing Administration Is No Longer Helping DACA Recipients With Housing Loans

In a blow to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development says young undocumented immigrants will be ineligible for federally backed housing loans. The news comes after months of confusion about the policy for immigrants who were brought here as children. Back in April, Secretary of HUD, Ben Carson denied this at a congressional testimony but a Housing and Urban Development (HUD) official said last week DACA recipients are indeed not eligible for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans.

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans are intended to make homeownership more attainable for those with lower credit scores and incomes.

Capture.jpg12img_5e277c525c654
Credit:@hispaniccaucus/Twitter

“Because DACA does not confer lawful status, DACA recipients remain ineligible for FHA loans,” Len Wolfson, a Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) official, wrote in a letter to California Democratic Rep. Pete Aguilar last Tuesday. “Determination of citizenship and immigration status is not the responsibility of HUD, and the Department relies on other government agencies for this information.”

The latest declaration is a reversal from HUD’s previous statements to questions about whether FHA is backing mortgages for DACA recipients. The Trump administration has been trying to rescind the Obama era policy but has been blocked by a federal judge from doing so.

“I’m sure we have plenty of DACA recipients who have FHA mortgages,” Carson said at a congressional hearing in April. “I would simply say that I have instructed everyone to follow the laws of the United States with regard to DACA, with regard to anyone who is an immigrant or a potential immigrant to this country, and as long as you continue to follow the laws you will have my approval.

In the letter, Wolfson put the blame on the Obama administration for the policy and its regulations. He references former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s letter from 2012 that DACA “confers no substantive right, immigration status or pathway to citizenship” for recipients.

Even after Carson said that “plenty of DACA recipients” were receiving FHA-backed loans, lenders were being told to do the exact opposite.

Capture.jpg12img_5e277c525c654
Credit:@buzzfeednews/Twitter

According to Buzzfeed News, After Carson denied the notion that DACA recipients weren’t being approved for FHA loans, many reported that they were still being denied help.

“The explanation we received from HUD is inconsistent with the realities on the ground and statements made by Secretary Carson to members of the Appropriations Committee, and it does nothing to clarify the confusion created by the agency’s inconsistent policies,” Aguilar said in a statement to BuzzFeed News last Thursday.

The FHA has never stated that receiving a loan means requiring citizenship or lawful status.

Capture.jpg12img_5e277c525c654
Credit:@senjackyrosen

DACA recipients had previously never faced problems when applying for federally-backed housing assistance. FHA has also never had a clear policy that pertains to DACA recipients. According to the FHA’s single-family housing handbook, a housing guide the agency refers lenders to, notes that an Employment Authorization Document, which DACA recipients possess, is necessary “to substantiate work status” for noncitizens and qualifies them for such loans.

Under the Obama administration, HUD was supporting DACA borrowers under these circumstances. Yet the Trump administration has clearly enforced these guidelines differently.

“We know that DACA recipients have received these loans in the past, and it’s shameful that HUD is allowing the president’s anti-immigrant agenda to dictate housing policy,” Aguilar told Buzzfeed News.

This news comes out as the House Financial Services Committee last Wednesday passed a bill, Homeownership for DREAMers Act, that guarantees DACA recipients have the right to obtain federally backed mortgages.

This means recipients also can not be denied based on their immigration status. The bill is set to go to the House floor for approval, but many believe it’s unlikely the bill will pass the Republican-held Senate or be signed into law by the president.

READ: With Democrats Now In Charge Of The House, What Does That Mean For DACA Moving Forward?

Her Mom Cleaned Houses To Pay For Her Education After Her School Learned She Was Undocumented And Took Her Scholarship

Fierce Boss Ladies

Her Mom Cleaned Houses To Pay For Her Education After Her School Learned She Was Undocumented And Took Her Scholarship

When administrative officials at Camila Ozores Silva’s university found out she was undocumented, they took away her scholarship and made her pay back her tuition fees. The news meant that the student from Argentina had to find a new way to support herself through college all on her own. Left uncertain as to how she would pay for her college education, the student who had aspired to pursue graduate school after college went to her dad and told him about her new plan: she would leave school for a semester and work to save money. But instead of receiving a supportive shrug from her father and an assuring pat on the back for her decision, Ozores’s dad told her “Me cortaré el brazo antes de que dejes de ir a la escuela,” (I’ll cut my arm off before you stop going to school).

Thanks to the support of her father, the Latina who recently graduated from the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida will be attending graduate school in the fall. Student loans and debt will not be following her.

Last Friday, Ozores captured the attention of Twitter when she posted a photo of her father congratulating her after her graduation.

In a series of posts on her Twitter account, the psychology major shared a photo from her big day and her story of deciding to leave school before her parents intervened to help. In a post written by Ozores on her blog site, the new graduate explained how she and her parents “crafted a game plan to get me to the finish line in whatever ways we could manage. My mom began cleaning houses, her 60-year old body bending and stretching to polish the homes of people who voted to kick her out of this country, for my education. I started working thirty hours a week at a fast food restaurant while balancing a full load of classes. We made it work.”

Ozores’ post on Twitter quickly went viral.

Of course, trolls who caught wind of the student’s post quickly flooded it with hate and derogatory words. Many even started to tag ICE and called for her deportation. Fortunately, Ozores is a DACA recipient and is protected from being expelled from the country. She has a social security number as well as work authorization.

In response to the posts, the new graduate explained that her scholarship had been given to her for her academic achievements in high school with her full story given to USF. “The university had all my documents but still gave it to me, I never lied or falsified anything,” she explained on Twitter. “The scholarship also came with in-state tuition, as do all at my school. When they realized their mistake they took both away and made me pay back the scholarship money they had already given me.”

While trolls have done their best to flood Ozores’ story with hate, there’s no doubting how her story has impacted users on the platform.

Despite some ugly comments, many following and commenting on Ozores’ thread on Twitter have offered their support.

In fact, some undocumented students have started sharing their own experiences on her thread

As of early Tuesday, Ozares’ post had received nearly two hundred thousand comments. Hundreds of which included stories from fellow DREAMers and undocumented students

And most of us are simply just excited to see the great things she goes on to do next.

According to Camila’s account, she’ll be attending Colorado State University this coming fall.

Because by the looks of it she has big plans to help out the undocumented community.

Here’s to this year’s undocumented graduate students and DREAMers paving a way for themselves!

Read: Here’s How Activists In The U.S. Are Welcoming Women Refugees Who Traveled On The Central American Caravan

Recommend this story by clicking the share button below! 

Here’s What This Undocumented College Grad Has To Say About The Haters Threatening Her With ICE For Celebrating Her Graduation

Culture

Here’s What This Undocumented College Grad Has To Say About The Haters Threatening Her With ICE For Celebrating Her Graduation

@camilaronipizza / Twitter / camilaronipizza / Instagram

One of the biggest gifts a child can give to a parent is the gift of hard work. It’s an even bigger accomplishment when the hard work comes through sacrifice and incredible odds. Camila Ozores Silva from Florida did just that recently when she walked across the stage to receive her bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida in Tampa. The DACA recipient worked long hours while working full time proving that her hard work and her parents’ sacrifices were worth it.

Camila Ozores Silva recently got her bachelor’s degree after overcoming tough obstacles.

Undocumented. Immigrant. Latina. Queer. Woman. Low income. First-gen. Anxiety. All these salient identities and labels used to be barriers that I thought for sure would keep me from reaching my goals. All of these were reasons society told me I would not be as successful as my peers. College graduate. This identity would not have been possible without the fuel of my marginalized identities. The multiple systemic and overt obstacles in my way only served as even more reasons why I needed to achieve my dreams. This diploma I’m about to receive is a privilege and an honor and it’s a testimony to the hard work of my parents and mentors, not just myself. This one is for my family and for the millions of other folks who hold my same identities that can’t quite yet strive for their dreams. Tomorrow will forever be the day that I reclaimed my narrative and proved myself wrong. Yo soy fuerte, yo soy capaz, yo soy invincible, yo soy mujer. ??‍?? #undocugrad #latinasinhighered #werk #immigrad #undocugrads #latinxgrads ?: @josejacobphotography

A post shared by Camila Ozores (@camilaronipizza) on

The 21-year-old received a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology degree from the University of South Florida in Tampa, and tweeted how she not only accomplished her dreams but was able to do that thanks to her father.

In a tweet that has now gone viral, Ozores Silva writes what it was like to be undocumented and still get college degree.

Ozores Silva found out she was undocumented as a teen and her life flipped upside down. She writes that despite facing an enormous amount of pressure because she was undocumented, her father encouraged her that they would endure the challenge together.

“I realized then that my education was no longer just mine,” Ozores Silva writes in her blog. “This was for my parents, immigrants to a country that tries and strips them of their culture and rejects them in so many ways. This was for my brother, a year behind me in school and someone I hoped to inspire to always strive for something more.”

In an interview with mitu, Ozores Silva discusses how she persevered through working 30 hours a week on top of a full class load.

brows done, life poppin

A post shared by Camila Ozores (@camilaronipizza) on

“I realized early on that this was never going to be easy with the systemic and institutional barriers placed against me and my community, Ozores Silva says. “Understanding that I needed to want this more than anything and be willing to fight for it helped me succeed.”

Ozores Silva encourages other Dreamers not to give up their fight for an education.

With so many Dreamers hanging in the balance of what the government will do to their DACA status, Ozores Silva shares words of wisdom:

“If you feel discouraged, let it come and feel it but don’t let it keep you down because education is a right that we all deserve and if you work hard enough, I believe you can achieve it,” Ozores Silva says. “Also, you might have to let go of the perfect dream. Sometimes financial setbacks are the ones most out of control, especially without the privilege of DACA and work authorization. However this doesn’t mean you need to quit, but this might mean you need to modify your dream by taking less classes at a time, going to community college, and/or graduating late. All of that is okay because it’s not about how long it takes you but it’s about you getting there.”

Ozores Silva also received some hateful comments regarding her undocumented status. To those people, she says “have empathy.”

“I’d like to tell those with hateful mindsets about my community to have empathy and hear out the real human beings affected by the terrible narratives being spewed about us,” Ozores Silva says. “I would also tell my fellow undocumented/DACA folks to have hope and to know that even if they’re not protesting in the streets or out of the shadows, their mere existence and taking up space is resistance.”

Now that Ozores Silva is done with college, she will soon be headed to Colorado State University where she will seek a masters in Student Affairs.

“I’m super excited to take my activism to a new state and continue learning as I believe education has saved my life.”

READ: Meet One Of The Students Who Walked Out During Mike Pence’s Notre Dame Commencement Speech

Share this story with all of your friends by tapping that little share button below!