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Community Stops Local Immigrant’s Deportation: Calls for Deportation Relief for More Families

December 17, 2011

This article is re-posted from the Alliance for Immigrants Rights & Reform in Michigan. GRIID was pleased to receive such news, both because it speaks to the power of direct action and because it means that there are plenty of people who support immigrant rights and immigration justice.

On Tuesday, Ann Arbor immigrant Lourdes Salazar learned that her December 27th deportation had been postponed for one year through Deferred Action. She will remain in the country to enjoy Christmas with her family in the United States.



Lourdes came to the United States in 1997 with hopes of creating a better life for her family.  She is the mother of three U.S. citizen children ages 13, 9, and 7 who need Lourdes to stay in the United States with them. Lourdes’ husband was deported back to Mexico in 2010 leaving Lourdes as the only parent these children have.

Lourdes is extremely happy that she has been granted deferred action. “I want to thank everyone who has signed my petition, made phone calls and sign onto letters of support. This experience has taught me so much. I want to teach others about my struggle so that they can learn how to stand up for their families. No one else should have to go through what my family is going through.”

Efforts to stop her deportation included the support of various local and national advocates including the Washtenaw Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights, the Social Work Allies for Immigrant Rights,, Alliance for Immigrants Rights – Michigan, Migrant Immigrant Rights Advocacy, Immigrant Rights on Campus, St. Francis of Assissi Catholic Church, Michigan Immigration and Labor Law Association, and St. Mary Student Parish Catholic Church.

Lourdes would like to thank the 2,500 supporters who signed onto her petition, and the letters of support from the Ann Arbor County Commission, Senator Levin, Congressman Dingell, the Jesuit Provincial of Chicago-Detroit, and the Bishop of Lansing.

“Although we are very happy that Lourdes has been granted deferred action and she will get to spend a wonderful Christmas with her family, we want to push on President Obama to implement Prosecutorial Discretion for all those families that did not get Lourdes’s support and will spend this Christmas separated from their loved ones.” Priscila Maritnez from the Alliance for Immigrant Rights.

In an announcement on August 18, 2011, Secretary Napolitano stated the Administration would instruct Immigration and Customs Enforcement to suspend the prosecution of non-criminal immigrants with long-standing ties to the United States, especially in cases involving families.  Lourdes has been in the country for 14 years, has three US Citizen children, and a U.S. citizen brother who has applied to fix Lourdes’ immigration status.

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