OCIYU Press Release: Grant Local Community Member Stay of Removal

For Immediate Release
August 18, 2017

Contact: Jose Servin, OCIYU, 714.728.2520, jservin@ociyu.org

Santa Ana, CA – Immigrant youth will stand alongside community leaders today outside of the Immigration Customs and Enforcement building (34 Civic Center Plaza, Santa Ana, CA) at 7:30am to demand that Immigration Customs and Enforcement grant a stay of removal in the case of Alvaro Benitez. He’s not a priority for deportation and needs to be with his family.  Alvaro’s case is an example of why ICE needs to stop separating families and spreading fear in communities that are unfairly being criminalized.

Alvaro came here at the age of 15 and has worked ever since. He is a father of four. His eldest is currently in college and is looking to become a police officer. Without their father present, these children could lose a great role model. Alvaro says, “my biggest goal in life is to see my children grow old and contribute to society for the better.” Each of his children aspires to grow up and give back to their communities because their father instilled that value in them from a young age. They would also be “losing their primary source of economic and emotional support because I am their greatest advocate.” Alvaro says he will “die wishing for his father’s embrace” in order to provide for his children and secure their future.

Due to the emboldening of ICE through scapegoating rhetoric and enforcement tactics, our local communities are in a state of fear. while DACA recipients are in the spotlight after the September 5th decision to repeal it, people left out of the program continue to be targeted. We will stand with Alvaro and any other community member who is unfairly targeted by ICE and separated from their family.

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