Local organization finding ways to hire DACA professionals, support their career needs

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, we're taking a look at a local organization that's finding ways to hire educated DACA professionals.

"How can we transition from being a student that is undocumented, to now transitioning to being a professional that is undocumented," said Sharet Garcia, founder of the group Undocuprofessionals Network.

Garcia created the group two years ago out of a need to help and support others in her situation.

She says, like so many other DACA recipients, she lives in fear of losing her job because she's undocumented.

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy, also known as DACA, grants protections from deportation for children who were brought into the country by their undocumented parents.

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There are cases where DACA recipients, like Garcia, are allowed to work in the United States with a work permit.

"Every two years, you have this anxiety of not knowing if your DACA is going to be able to be renewed and also with this fear that you will lose your job any day," Garcia said.

After she learned there was a need for a DACA professional support group, Garcia put together a website and created an Instagram account to reach out to other undocumented professionals. She says she now has around 12,000 followers.

Her goal: getting the word out that there are legal ways to hire well-educated DACA professionals.

Garcia says they only need a Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, or ITIN. She's been holding workshops to help students and professionals get their careers started as well as career development.

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