This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(WGHP) — Yahel Flores lives life on the extremes.

His family and professional lives are great. He’s a die-hard Carolina Panthers fan. He’s got a 10-year-old son. He’s got a new office on the 8th floor of a downtown Winston-Salem skyscraper.

But he also lives with an extreme uncertainty. He doesn’t know when or if he’ll have to leave the United States. And more than 25,000 others here in North Carolina are living with the same possibility.

“There is a real possibility of going back into hiding and not surfacing until something happens,” he told me during a recent interview. “For me, I don’t have that luxury because I still have to provide some type of life for my son.”

Flores came to Eastern Forsyth County when he was 7-years-old. His parents moved the family here from Mexico.

“My parents were both college-educated in Mexico. My dad was in the medical field. My mom was in business administration,” he said. “But they felt like they needed to provide us more opportunities.”

Flores struggled mastering English during his early years in public school. But he was able to become active and flourish playing both football and soccer by the time he finished high school.

He spent a lot of time in Southeast Winston-Salem, the Waughtown Street area. The city’s Latino population is concentrated there. Like many areas, it’s struggling with financial hardships and crime.

“There are a lot of different hardships in that area,” he told me. “But there are a lot of positives. There are black and brown businesses in that area trying to pull themselves up. So seeing that in my community made me want to continue improving my community.”

Today, that “community” includes not just Southeast Winston-Salem, but—you could argue—all of North and South Carolina.

Flores is the Carolinas Director of the American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC), a bipartisan coalition of business leaders that supports what it calls “common sense immigration reform” that boosts the economy, creates, jobs, eases the labor shortage and supports families.

He spends a lot of his time advocating at both the state and local levels for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or “DACA” recipients. These people, often referred to as “dreamers,” were brought to the United States as children.

They get a renewable two-year period of “deferred action” from deportation. In other words, they won’t be deported during that time. They’re also able to attend school and get work permits.

Flores knows all about DACA. He’s been a DACA recipient since graduating high school. He, like the 25,000+ other DACA recipients in North Carolina, has to pay $500.00 every two years and go through a complete background check with fingerprints to get renewed. This also means getting his driver license renewed.

“So even a small traffic ticket or not paying them on time can actually take (or affect) your immigration status,” he told me.

But those aren’t the only challenges DACA recipients face.

They aren’t eligible for in-state tuition at North Carolina’s universities. So getting a higher education is a challenge.

And even if they get training in particular fields, many can’t get licensed to work in those fields. North Carolina has no state law that specifies DACA recipients as a category of non-citizens eligible to get occupational and professional licenses.

“Simple things like becoming a barber, a hairstylist, a nail tech or even a nurse, they can’t get licenses,” Flores says.

So in his position with ABIC, Flores works not only to help these people get licenses, he advocates for them on the state and local level. He also works to help immigrant-owned businesses find workers in the middle of the current worker shortage.

He also works the get the message out that DACA recipients and other undocumented immigrants can help solve the country’s staffing issues and high food costs if more of them get jobs in certain industries—like agriculture. North Carolina currently faces a major farm labor shortage.

“We’re entrepreneurs. We’re providing businesses. We’re providing services. We’re also educated,” he told me when describing himself and other DACA recipients. “There’s a big worker shortage that DACA recipients are trying to fill with their education.”

But despite all this potential, Flores and other DACA recipients also face a harsh reality: they could face deportation if DACA is dismantled.

Currently, DACA’s status is tied up in court because—among other things—its opponents argue President Obama overstepped his authority by establishing it via executive order. The next step is for a district court judge in Texas to make a decision whether to do away with it.

Until then, Flores believes the ultimate solution would be immigration reform that includes a pathway to citizenship. He and others were hoping that would happen before the Republican majority reclaimed the House of Representatives earlier this year. That didn’t happen.

And there are no signs newly-introduced bipartisan legislation that includes a pathway to citizenship will pass anytime soon.

More from FOX8

North Carolina News

See the latest North Carolina news

So Flores continues to advocate, wait, and push a message of cooperation.

“Don’t forget everybody’s human. So sit down, grab a beer, grab a coffee, grab something. Sit down and find commonality. That’s what I’ve been doing for so many years in North Carolina. It’s very difficult, but not impossible.”

For more information on the American Business Immigration Coalition, click here.