Local family reacts to Obama’s immigration statement

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The Ortiz family gathered around the television Thursday night, shedding tears of joy as President Obama announced a temporary plan to shield five million undocumented immigrants from deportation.

"At least my kids will know that their father will come to them every night,” said Dulce Ortiz whose husband is undocumented. “They're not going to be worried one of these days that he's not going to come home."

The president's announcement gave her hope that he'll never be deported. 

"This is something that is going to relieve the fear," she said.

It’s a step in the right direction says Rev. David Fraccaro, executive director of FaithAction International House in Greensboro, which helps nearly 30,000 immigrants a year with jobs, housing and other basic needs.

"They've been wanting to be full participants in our community for a long time and this should give the chance," Fraccaro said.

While Fraccaro calls the announcement good news, he says more work still needs to be done to permanently fix the immigration system.

"This is only a policy,” he said. “It is temporary, and it is limited. Nothing ultimately is going to change for the long term for 12 million undocumented immigrants and many others until immigration reform law is passed."

But even so, Ortiz says its progress.

"This is a start," she said.

On Dec. 7, Fraccaro will hold a special meeting for immigrants to explain what the new immigration changes mean.

The event will be held St. Mary’s Catholic Church at 812 Duke St. in Greensboro.

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