Where was the “family values” of the Alabama Republicans when they voted for the Alabama Anti-immigration Bill?
This bill will rip families apart. Children of undocumented immigrants will be severed from their parents which are caught up in dragnets? Will these children overwhelm the foster care system? Will undocumented children be arrested and shipped into the labyrinthine immigration system, too?
As reported in this article, these are not mere hypotheticals but real-life situations.
Maria Isobel Chaparro will never forget Nov. 4, 2010.
The Honduras native and longtime Turlock resident had dropped off her children, Alex and Kaylee, at school and returned home to pick up some clothes for an impoverished family with 12 children. Suddenly, “one person came up to me and asked for my name, then another two people showed up and surrounded me,” she said. “They started to grab me, and I began to scream desperately. I started to cry and said, ‘Oh, my God, please help me!’ ”
Her screams woke her oldest son, Dalman Valle, 25. When he came outside, the three said they were immigration officials who were removing his mom for deportation.
On that November day, she was put in a vehicle and taken to a detention center in Fresno. She wasn’t allowed to call her husband, a legal resident from Mexico, or say goodbye to her two younger children, both native Californians and U.S. citizens. . .
When she arrived in Fresno, she recalled, “they chained my feet so tight as if I were an animal. They scarred my ankles from it. I asked why they were doing that and all they could say was ‘We do what we are ordered to do; we are just doing our job.’ ”
. . . She finally was allowed to call her husband, Cesar, who drove to Fresno to see her. Less than 24 hours later, she was taken to Bakersfield, and then to Arizona. Maria said she was told she’d have a hearing, but instead, 12 days later, was deported to her native Honduras.
. . . .Maria, 44, has spent the past seven months in Honduras. Her family here has hired yet another attorney to try to bring her home. Dalman is a college student in Chico. Cesar, a 42-year-old machinist, and her two youngest children moved into Cesar’s sister’s home in Turlock to share help with support and child care. The family keeps in touch nearly each day by Skype — an application for Internet video calls — but it’s been hard on everyone, especially the children.
“My mom is really nice,” said Alex, 12. “She helps me with stuff I need to do. She has a great smile and she’s happy all the time.”
“I miss her the most at bedtime,” said Kaylee, 10. “That’s when we would pray together and she would hug me.”
The two flew to Honduras after school was out, their first trip out of the state.
Maria said she broke into tears when she saw her children at the airport.
Stories like this will begin in September in Alabama as undocumented immigrants begin being arrested for “trespassing.” Odds of the American-citizen children being reunited with their undocumentned mother are slim.
According to Sharon Rummery, regional media manager of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, deported people can come back into the United States, but it takes lots of time and paperwork . . . someone such as Maria would need to get two waivers — one showing that the deportation had caused an extreme hardship, and one to get around a rule that says any person who has lived illegally in this country for a year or more and goes out of the country for any reason, including deportation, must wait at least 10 years before coming back.
How would you like to be separated from your children for at least 10 years? Would you like communicating by Skype to your 10 and 12 year old kids? I suppose it is just and equitable to contructively deport the legal husband and the American-citizen children, too. Can anyone argue this will be a just result? Were these issues even contemplated because it is not reflected within the bill.