A DREAMer’s Life Transformed by DACA

After 14 years living undocumented in the U.S., Oralia Basurto’s life drastically changed. Because of a new immigration policy created by President Obama, she was able to do things she could before only dream of — secure a better job, buy a car and live every day without the fear of deportation.

Basurto, 26, was approved for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals in June 2013. Since then her life has transformed — for the better.

“I have a driver’s license now. I have a better job that pays more. I have a car under my name and I’m building my credit,” Basurto said. “DACA opens doors for a lot of things, even the smallest things like having a cell phone under your own name. Even those little things count, everything counts.”

“I’m here to improve my life, to be a good citizen, a good American,” Basurto said. “I’m not a criminal. I’m not a low life. I always said, ‘If you give me a chance, I’ll prove that I can be as accomplished as the person next to me who has papers.’”

Basurto is a FileRight employee, a job she was able to secure with the work permit she received when approved for DACA. Today, she helps people use FileRight to complete their own immigration paperwork.

“I find the technology very, very useful,” Basurto said. “It doesn’t let you continue if there’s an answer missing. It’s simple and tells you what to do step-by-step. And this is something that people can actually afford.”

Basurto came to the U.S. when she was 10 years old, leaving behind her parents and six siblings in Michoacan, Mexico. With her brother-in-law as her guide, they illegally crossed the border by foot.

“It was the longest walk of my life,” Basurto said.

Once in the U.S., Basurto joined her two sisters in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she’s lived ever since. She’s graduated from high school, taken college classes and worked in Las Vegas. Her family is here. Her work is here. The United States is her home.