As Congress continues to debate immigration reform, countless families across the nation, including many here in Florida, must helplessly standby while their loved ones are taken away by federal agents and processed for deportation. While most people recognize the strictness in the law, few are able to stomach the thought that these families’ lives are changed forever as a result of these laws being in limbo at this time.
Such is the case for one Florida family who asked legislators at an immigration forum in North Miami what they should do about their loved one’s upcoming deportation. According to the family, some legislators were shocked to hear how suddenly his departure would be.
Problems started for the 42-year-old Florida man when he picked up an acquaintance on his way to work. The acquaintance was allegedly involved in a gang and when officers arrested the men, it was quickly discovered that the 42-year-old father of four, did not have permanent citizenship in the country. Removal proceedings soon followed, but far too quickly for the 42-year-old man who was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.
His family says they learned about his expedited deportation only hours after he had learned of it. In an attempt to keep their family together, they spoke with several Congress members at the forum, asking for their help in the matter. Just recently, their requests were heard and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents said that they would hold off on his scheduled deportation, giving the man time to provide the agency with information and documents that may help his cause.
Situations such as this are happening more frequently as republicans and democrats alike continue to put pressure on the Obama administration to do something about the number of illegal immigrations to the U.S. every year. Unfortunately, thousands of families are being separated as a result, often times leaving them with little legal counsel to help guide them through the process.
Sources: The Miami Herald, “Bombshell request to Democrat U.S. Reps at forum: Can you stop dad from being deported at 4 a.m.?” Marc Caputo, May 13, 2013
The Sun Sentinel, “Deportation on hold for man held in Pompano detention center,” Mike Clary, May 15, 2013