Leading up to the major development from Washington regarding deportation of young immigrants earlier today were years of lives spent in the shadows. For Manuel Vasquez, a protest organized by the NC DREAM Team in September 2011 gave him a chance to “come out” into the light in civil disobedience. While the news today might be a step in the direction for a better tomorrow for the likes of Vasquez, short of a true DREAM Act, are their futures any less uncertain? And given the failure of previous attempts at prosecutorial discretion, how much will this benefit them?
The undocumented status of Manuel Vasquez, 21, prevents him from pursuing higher education or gaining meaningful employment. Manuel works long hours selling wigs and beauty supplies to help support his parents and siblings in Raleigh, N.C., where he lives in a cramped house. Frustration with state and federal immigration policies drove him to risk his own deportation in a protest organized by the NC DREAM Team, a group of undocumented young adults lobbying for legal status in the U.S.
Video + Production | Joshua Davis
Special thanks to Josh Stillwell for shooting 2nd camera at the protest and to Urmila Ramakrishnan for transcription.
As part of his master’s thesis for the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at UNC Chapel Hill, Josh Davis has been following the NC DREAM team since Fall of 2010. Visit the undocumentary website for more information.