Immigration lawyers answer questions at ACS forum

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COLUMBIA – About 45 concerned Mid-Missourians had the opportunity to ask the important questions they want experts to answer Wednesday night. The American Constitution Society Missouri Chapter hosted the "Let's Talk Immigration" forum. It gave people a chance to voice their concerns about President Donald Trump's immigration policies.

People at the meeting inquired about a range of immigration related issues including Trump's executive orders and policy proposals on the subject. Some also voiced concern about the future of former President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, which was implement through an executive order. Despite vowing to overturn DACA during his campaign, Trump has backed off so far on reversing one of Obama's key immigration policies.

"It's a scary time for people," immigration lawyer Helene Fehlig Tatum said. She was one of the lawyers answering questions at the forum.

Fehlig Tatum also said she believes the complexities of current immigration law are the main reason for the current situation of 11 million illegal immigrants living in the U.S.

American Constitution Society Missouri Chapter Secretary, Jose Caldera said the goal of the forum was to better inform people about President Trump's immigration policies and give people the opportunity to seek legal advice from experts.

"The reality is that there's a lot of questions that people have that they want to ask of attorneys, but they might be too expensive or they just don't have time to go talk to an attorney. This was an opportunity for people to meet, one-on-one, to have a moment to express their concerns and to ask questions from experts and to have those questions answered, head on," Caldera said.

The American Constitution Society is a network of lawyers that tries to promote a progressive vision of laws and the constitution.

Tuesday, Trump announced new Department of Homeland Security policies to crackdown on illegal immigrants.