November 19th – More than a dozen undocumented Georgians and supporters have locked themselves to the gates of the downtown Atlanta ICE office as part of the national campaign demanding the President stop deportations and expand deferred action for all.
“If the President can stop the deportations of military families, he can stop breaking apart other families as well,” explains Marisela Medina. “All my children think about is the day I could be taken away. Instead the President should grant relief to my family and all families. What is he waiting for?”
The group cites the Secure Communities deportation program active in Georgia since 2009 and the 287g agreements in counties like Cobb and Gwinnett and the state’s HB87 as creating an atmosphere of terror that hurts public safety and needlessly deports the very people who would benefit from reform.
They say that the President has the legal authority and the moral obligation to stop their suffering by expanding the already existing deferred action program, especially as immigration reform meets challenges in Congress.
In explaining why he was participating in the action, Jose Luis Romero stated, “Everyday immigrants face the risk of deportation just by taking our children to school. Today is no different. It’s just that now we take that risk as we defend the rights of our entire community. We’re doing everything in our power to stop deportations, now it’s time for the President to do everything in his power to give us relief.”
Suzanne Pharr added, “Very large numbers of both immigrants and LGBT people live in the South and face threats of violence if we live openly. I oppose the human crisis caused by detention and deportation and I support dignity and safety for all our people. We’re working together to create a South built on justice.”