February 27, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- Immigration officials have more discretion than in the past
Article provided by Law Offices of Matthew H. Green
Visit us at http://www.arizonaimmigration.net
Since taking office, President Obama's administration has deported approximately 400,000 people each year -- more than any administration since the 1950s. The federal government's Secure Communities program has been controversial, but the Obama administration has been pushing to expand the program nationwide. Despite the Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE's claim it would not tear families apart by deportation, the Secure Communities program has shown no such mercy.
Take, for example, the family of 25-year-old immigration activist Erika Andiola in Phoenix, Arizona. In early January 2013, ICE agents came to Erika's home looking for her mother, Maria Arreola, and brother, 36-year-old Heriberto Andiola Arreola. Ms. Arreola was arrested in 2012 for driving without a license and her fingerprints were run through the Secure Communities system, revealing that Ms. Arreola had been deported back to Mexico in 1998 after illegally crossing the border into Arizona.
This put Ms. Arreola on a priority deportation list so ICE agents arrested her and Mr. Andiola Arreola on the spot. However, many believe the arrests were retribution for Ms. Andiola's immigration activism and creation of the advocacy group DRM Capitol. Ms. Arreola was taken to a Florence, Arizona holding location while Mr. Andiola Arreola stayed in a Phoenix holding facility.
Social media outreach brings a tidal wave of support
Ms. Andiola quickly took to social media to plead for help, posting an emotional video on YouTube. The response was overwhelming. Supporters emailed, tweeted, called and signed online petitions demanding that the federal government release Ms. Arreola and Mr. Andiola Arreola.
Immigration officials quickly reversed their decision and released Ms. Andiola's mother and brother with the explanation that their cases fell within ICE's "prosecutorial discretion policy" that could "merit an exercise of discretion." More likely, the agency was concerned over the highly public demands for their release. However, while Ms. Arreola and Mr. Andiola Arreola are home for now, there is no guarantee ICE will not re-arrest and deport them to Mexico. Sadly, Ms. Arreola and Mr. Andiola Arreola's story is not uncommon. Marielena Hincapie, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, says the same type of thing "happen[s] every day, in every state." She said the difference in this case is that Ms. Andiola is nationally known for her activism and was able to connect with an expansive network of people willing to speak out. Ms. Hincapie said there are many stories that do not end so happily that the public doesn't hear about.
Keep yourself on the right side of the federal government's "discretion"
The federal immigration laws are complicated and constantly changing. Immigration officials now have more "discretion" to determine when to deport those not legally in the U.S., but that merely means the standard for removal is now completely subject to these officials' interpretation. Having the aid of a skilled immigration attorney who knows the system could mean the difference between deportation and continuing life as you know it.
If you or a loved one is facing deportation, contact an experience immigration lawyer to discuss your situation and how to convince ICE officials to use their discretion in your favor.---
Press release service and press release distribution provided by http://www.24-7pressrelease.com
# # #Read more Press Releases from FL Web Advantage: