Friday, January 11, 2013
From the National Immigration Law Center:
In just over 12 hours, we scored a victory for the movement! As you may know, late last night, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raided the home of Arizona DREAM leader Erika Andiola and detained her loving mother, Maria Arreola, and her brother, Heriberto Andiola Arreola. Under Erika’s leadership, NILC and allies immediately sprang into action, and we’re proud to report that Maria and Heriberto have been released from detention.
Erika’s story is, sadly, one that repeats itself hundreds of thousands of times each year. Last night, Erika and her younger brother watched in horror as her mother was handcuffed in front of her children in her own front yard. This is something that an unacceptably high number of immigrant children have had to witness as well.
Although ICE has exercised its prosecutorial discretion to release Erika’s mother and brother, the administration must affirmatively provide administrative relief so the Andiola family can be free of the continued threat of deportation.
Erika is a beloved leader in the immigrants’ rights community, which mobilized quickly to demand that ICE release Erika’s family. However, this is not the case for so many others: Tens of thousands of immigrants are simply swept away without anyone ever learning about it and often without the opportunity to even go before an immigration judge.
President Obama and Congress have rightly stated that they will work to create an immigration process for aspiring Americans. However, until that process is in place, President Obama must stop these inhumane detentions and deportations. Using federal resources to tear loved ones apart is neither in the best interests of our families nor our government, and President Obama should abandon policies that separate families now.
We all know we need to fix the immigration system. The Andiola family’s horrific experience brings home the reality that the promise of immigration reform is not enough. We cannot continue to fight these broken policies one Dreamer at a time, one worker at a time, one family at a time. We need both administrative and legislative action now.
Join us over the next few weeks and months to demand that we curb our nation’s appetite for deporting workers, students, and parents. Together, we can secure justice and equality for all.
National Immigration Law Center