DREAM Act Advocate's Family Detained, Quickly Released
US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents detained DREAM Act advocate Erika Andiola’s mother and brother because of a deportation order dating back to 1998. After a tearful plea on YouTube and outcry on social media both were released on Friday morning.
Ms. Andiola said her mother was on her way to Mexico when the bus driver received a phone call to turn around.
“My mom was on the way to Mexico,” Andiola posted on Facebook. “She said the driver turned around when she received a call. She was really confused.... They told her that the reason why she was returning was because her daughter was mobilizing the whole country to get her to come back.”
Now an ICE spokesman said the case needs to be reviewed and the department has to make sure they work within President Barack Obama’s policies.
“Initial review of these cases revealed that certain factors outlined in ICE’s prosecutorial discretion policy appear to be present and merit an exercise of discretion,” said Barbara Gonzalez, ICE press secretary. “A fuller review of the cases is currently ongoing. ICE exercises prosecutorial discretion on a case-by-case basis, considering the totality of the circumstances in an individual case.”
Ms. Andiola shot to fame in 2010 when ABC’s Dianne sawyer interviewed her after a federal judge blocked key portions of Arizona’s immigration laws. Many think her activism made her family prime targets for ICE.
In the end, though, it seems the government was just doing their job and following the law.
President Obama said immigration reform would be a top priority in his second term. Will this national outrage finally persuade him and Congress to tackle the issue?