Laz Ayala came to the United States as an undocumented immigrant when he was 14 years old. He’s a citizen now but says the announcement hits home. Salvadorans living in the United States will have until September 2019 to seek permanent residency or risk deportation.
“It’s causing a lot of stress for these families and it’s a devastating disruption in their lives to live not knowing where their mom or dad might be tomorrow,” he said.
As a businessman, Ayala says the decision will not only affect families but also the economy.
“I think we could have a good conversation about the contributions that these individuals make to our economy, in terms of the labor they provide, the taxes they pay, the goods they produce,” he said.
Ayala says he isn’t aware of a large Salvadorian population here, but the policy change will still have an effect.
The announcement was just made Monday and the full impact may not be known for several months.