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art by Favianna Rodriguez

Art by Favianna Rodriguez

“ You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore. ” – César Chávez, UFW

Undocumented Immigrant Felipe Montes Files Stay of Removal with I.C.E. To Stay with His Family in NC

March 20, 2013

UPDATE: We were unable to file the stay of removal today, but will do so tomorrow.

Presente.org and the Montes family are deeply concerned about the case of Felipe Montes, an undocumented immigrant whose nationally-reported deportation case has become emblematic of the profound problems with immigration and child welfare policies in the United States. Now it has reached a critical juncture. After two years of back and forth legal wrangling in the case, the Obama Administration is preparing to force Montes to leave the country, separating him from his wife and 3 children who are all citizens, including a newborn child.

“I want to be with my children no matter what, whether that is in the U.S., or in Mexico,” said Felipe Montes. “The fact is, though, that this is the only home they’ve ever known, and if I’m forced to leave at the end of this week, we may never be together again. All I’m asking for is the opportunity to stay and to support my family in the only home we’ve ever known.”

Today, Presente.org helped file a stay of removal with Immigration and Custom’s Enforcement that would allow Felipe to stay with his children and hopefully get a work permit which would give Felipe the opportunity to support his family. Presente.org is also calling on a portion of it’s almost 300,000 members to support Felipe.

Presente.org joins communities and organizations across the United States demanding that the Obama Administration give Felipe Montes a stay of removal. “Felipe just wants to be with his kids and will be unable to do so if he is forced out of the country,” said Arturo Carmona, Executive Director of Presente.org, an online advocacy organization that is circulating a petition to stop Montes' deportation. “Felipe Montes and his family have suffered enough in this arduous legal travesty. This is a textbook unfair case and an example of everything that's wrong with our immigration policy. No family should have to suffer through what Felipe Montes' and his family have suffered through because of what amounted to traffic violations. That he was deported in the first place in December of 2010, and that his family was put into this turmoil for all these years since, demonstrates how broken the system is."

Montes was deported from his home in small town North Carolina two years ago. Following a national campaign organized by Presente.org and over 20,000 members, Montes won a historic and unprecedented humanitarian parole from the Obama Administration allowing Montes to return to the United States and fight for custody of his children. It is unheard of that someone be allowed to return after being deported. Felipe’s humanitarian parole is up for review on March 23rd, an the Obama Administration iimmigration officials are pressuring him into buying a plane ticket to leave immediately.