EMT who performed rescues during Harvey among those who could be deported

Posted at 2:51 PM, Sep 04, 2017

While President Donald Trump is attempting to fulfill his campaign promise to reduce illegal immigration, some young adults who were raised in America are fearing deportation. 

Among those who could be deported is Jesus Contreras, a 23-year-old paramedic who worked six-straight days last week, rescuing fellow Houston-area residents from the flooding left behind from Hurricane Harvey. 

Contreras told NBC News last week that his family came to the United States when he was age 6. His family wanted to escape what he described as a "violent situation" in his hometown of Nuevo Laredo. 

After six exhausting days of saving lives, Contreras learned on Friday that Trump was considering ending DACA. DACA protects a group of 800,000 American residents from deportation. Those 800,000 young undocumented immigrants were those who entered the United States as a child and have been in the United States since 2007.

Those who qualify under DACA are given two-year work permits, which allows them to stay in the United States with some legal status.  

"We just got hit by a hurricane here — and now we're getting hit by another storm, an even bigger one," Contreras told NBC News on Friday.

The threat of getting deported made it more challenging for first responders during Harvey, Contreras told the Houston Chronicle

"People were scared that boats from U.S. immigration services were out there," Contreras told the Chronicle. "People weren't sure if they were trying to round up people from the water and take them straight to the immigration center."

On Tuesday, Trump is expected to announce that DACA will come to an end in six months. The six months give a deeply divided Republican-held Congress an opportunity to do something it has struggled to do: Immigration reform. 

While Trump was on the campaign trail, he promised to end DACA. But since being elected, Trump said that those under DACA "shouldn't worry."

In the meantime, people like Contreras continue to go to work not knowing how many days they have left in America. 

"These are families just like anybody else," Contreras told NBC News. "We're as American as can be."