Saturday, 17 March 2018
This week, the 12th of March, in the Time Magazine, there an article about how Trump's Immigration Policy is spiltting families apart. The title is « No one is safe ». First, it tells the story of Alejandro who was on his way to work just before two vehicles pulled up behide him at a stop sign. He saw plain-clothes Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents coming toward him . There was the word POLICE written on their vests. Alejandro was a little bit worried so he called his wife Maria to tell her what was happening. Contrary to him, she wasn't really worried. She knew that her husband had no criminal record and that he's been driving this road for years in California. They arrested him as he was considered as a « fugitive alien » by the ICE because since 2006, he goes over his visa. Therefore he had to be deported in Mexico. A few days later, they allowed him to return home with an ankle bracelet to say goodbye to his family. He left two children and a pregnant wife behind him.
However, they aren't the only ones. A lot of other families in America suffered from the same situation since the election of Donald Trump. When Barack Obama was in power, he told ICE to focus on violent delinquents but Trump didn't think the same way. He send decrets to people in a powerful position which were saying that the 11 million people who were living illegally in the country were a priority for deportation. Thomas Homan, the director of Ice, even said : “If you’re in the country illegally, we’re looking for you.”
This is why there a increase of arrests of undocumented immigrants. There are some examples : a 10 years old little girl who was disabled, a sweet grandma of a Navy veteran 's family and a father who was living in America since he was 10.
In the article, there're a lot of people who defend immigrants. One of them is Luis Zayas who's the dean of the Steve Hicks School of Social Work at the University of Texas at Austin. He gives the example of some agents of ICE who are arresting people when they leave church or when they drop their children to school.
This new policy also affects the family of undocumented people like the kids. More than 4 million Americans children have at least one undocumented parent.
To return to the story of Alejandro, Maria, like her husband, is an undocumented person. Their daughters are U.S citizens. She's afraid to be deported too and to leave her children here alone or with people she doesn't trust.
In Maria and Alejandro’s neighborhood, news of his arrest went viral. Their facebook profile is used to warn people of the localization of ICE's agents.
Alejandro even said that his friends avoid to leave their home and that they buy food at night when the ICE agents are less.
To describe this situation, Maria doesn't use the word « fear » anymore but « dread ».
The CHIRLA, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, advise undocumented parents to write a letter which say who will be in charge of their children if they are deported.
This article is also talking about the effect of the deportation of parents on the behaviour of kids like how they become depressed.
According to Laura St. John, legal director at the Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project, Maria could ask for a federal waiver but it's a process which takes 10 years so it means that she has to wait in Mexico before coming back to America. But Erin Quinn, an attorney at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center in San Francisco, assure that it was impossible for Maria to go to Mexico and come back here legally.
After all, Maria stayed in the U.S and goes on with her life but when the thought of raising her kids without their father comes to her head, she has tears in her eyes.