For Immediate Release  // Excuse Cross Postings //
August 4, 2016

Contact: Armando Carmona,, (323) 250-3018

What About Us?
Criminalized Immigrants Respond to President Obama’s Defense of “Second Chances”   

Los Angeles, CA – In response to President Obama’s announcement this week that he will be granting clemency to 214 Americans who were “incarcerated under outdated and unduly harsh sentencing laws,” immigrant families actively seeking redress from those very same laws issued the following series of reactions:

“President Obama says people deserve second chances. My family fully agrees. Unfortunately, my dad didn’t get a second chance when he was deported because of a traffic stop and a decades-old conviction,” said Victor Alvarez, son of Jose Alvarez who was deported in February of this year. “Now our family is torn apart and I had to put my education on hold to take a second job to support our family. We will continue to ask President Obama to right this wrong and let my dad come home.” Read more about Jose:

Stephanie Hernandez, daughter of Xochitl Hernandez, a single mother of 5 US citizen children currently in detention, said the following: “What about our family? My mom raised 5 U.S. Citizen kids and has lived in this country for almost thirty years. Because of a single lifting misdemeanor from a decade ago, President Obama’s government has kept her locked up in a for-profit jail since February and isn’t letting her out unless my family comes up with $60,000.” Read more about Xochitl:
“After my conviction, I built a good life for myself in Portland. I contributed to my community and have worked night and day to raise my two U.S. citizen daughters,” said Francisco Aguirre, a day laborer who pled no contest to a charge decades ago. “After much organizing and community support, the Department of Justice dropped the charges against me, but President Obama’s immigration enforcement agents still won’t leave me and my family alone.  President Obama is still trying to deport me,” he concluded. Read more about Francisco:

“The hypocrisy here is breathtaking. President Obama’s brutal deportation record has resulted in the unprecedented criminalization of migrants. He has fused our mass incarceration and our mass deportation systems, and he has put US immigration policy at odds with the criminal justice reform movement,”  said Pablo Alvarado, Executive Director of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON). He continued,  “The  President continues to say that he is deporting ‘felons not families,” a statement that not only doesn’t make any logical sense, it shows his double standard when it comes to immigrants.   In his remaining months in office, President Obama should make use of clemency power for immigrants  and he should immediately end his failed PEPCOMM policy which literally converted every single local police department in America into part of the civil federal immigration law enforcement apparatus.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.