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Undocumented immigrants with young American-citizen children urged to have plan in case deported

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SEATTLE — With President Donald Trump expanding deportations, millions of families are in limbo of what it means for them.

“It’s mostly fear,” said one Western Washington woman who asked that she not be identified by name.

On Thursday Q13 News spoke with a woman who did not want to be identified because she is married to an undocumented immigrant.

“To have someone step out of the home and not being able to come back,” said the woman.

She is an American citizen and her two children are as well.

“I am sure there will be a lot of children who will get separated,” said the woman.

Many undocumented immigrants have children who are U.S. citizens.

With Trump widening the net on the deportation of undocumented immigrants, families are now scrambling to find a way to stay together.

“There are a lot of know-your-rights training that is going on around the city,” Estela Ortega, of El Centro De La Raza, said.

The group is urging families to have a plan in place so their children don’t end up in state custody in case ICE agents show up at their door.

“You have got to get school records, immunization, birth certificates, so if your kids don’t have a passport and they are an American citizen you should have a passport for them,” Ortega said.

That advice is tough to give but a necessary one in a time when even immigration attorneys are struggling to keep up with all changes.

“It’s hard for us to give them any definitive answers of what will happen because we are trying to figure it out from day to day,” immigration attorney Maggie Cheng said.

A recent Pew Research Center shows most Americans support the Trump administration's efforts on immigration.

The research says 58% of Americans want more deportations and 77% want stricter policies to prevent people from overstaying visas. A Department of Homeland Security report showed that in 2015 about 400,000 people overstayed their visas. The people who overstayed the most were from Canada and Mexico.

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