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Teen's suicide draws attention to the DREAM Act

In a tragic story that suggests just how dire the immigration issue in the United States has become, a young man reportedly took his own life after feeling hopeless about his future when the DREAM Act failed to pass in Congress earlier this year.

Although there are differing accounts of the story in the media right now, what's clear is that many people in America who were brought into the country at a very young age are struggling. This is the country that they have known as their home their entire lives, yet they are not considered a part of it.

In the suicide tragedy, the 18-year-old young man from Texas was brought into the United States when he was six months old. Even though he excelled in school and hoped to go to college for engineering or architecture after high school graduation, he reportedly felt his undocumented status stood in the way.

His family said that the young man had never been in trouble with the law and was accepted into more than one college, but he felt that he would never be able to attain work because of his illegal status.

The young man's family told the media that they hope their loved one's death will bring more attention to the passage of the DREAM Act. Advocates, too, are saying that the tragedy shows how undocumented students are suffering due to Congress' inaction.

The DREAM Act is a bill that has been under consideration for a number of years and would allow students who enter the United States before the age of 16 to become legal residents after five years through completing higher education or joining the armed forces.

One thing to remember is that immigration should never be given up on. Help is available to begin your path to legal residency or citizenship.

Source: Fox News Latino, "Family Hopes Teen's Suicide Pushes Passage of DREAM Act," Bryan Llenas, Nov. 28, 2011.

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