Fear of deportation on the rise in Los Angeles County, UCLA survey says

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Thirty-seven percent of Los Angeles County residents surveyed by UCLA say they're concerned that they, a friend or a family member could be deported. (KABC)

Thirty-seven percent of Los Angeles County residents surveyed by UCLA say they're concerned that they, a friend or a family member could be deported.

It's not just undocumented immigrants who are worried.

In Echo Park, a majority Latino neighborhood, one man said he has a lot of friends for whom he fears daily. "They are hard workers and good people," Charlie Diaz said.

Diaz is among a growing number of residents who are voicing the same concern for their undocumented loved ones.

"I go to a church where maybe 80 percent are illegal, and, you know, we're part of the same congregation," Diaz said. "They're good people. They're good society. They pay taxes."

Latinos made up 43 percent of the UCLA survey sample. They represent the group that is most concerned about deportation, but they're not the only ones.

Thirty-one percent of Asian residents surveyed say they're worried too.

The UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs conducted the second annual quality of life study and included immigration questions for the first time this year.

They survey suggests the deportation concerns are not limited to only minority groups.

"Everybody knows somebody," said Zev Yaroslavsky of UCLA.

About 80 percent of the 1,600 people surveyed by UCLA said a friend or family member would be at a greater risk of deportation by enrolling in a government health, education or public housing program.

One man who works in the Echo Park area said he's witnessed the fear in an after-school program for children. "It just kind of spreads like wildfire," said Clyde Wellons. "You just kind of see it on everybody's face."

Related Topics:
newsimmigrationdeportationlatino lifeasian americanpoliticsLos AngelesLos Angeles CountyEcho Park
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