Last week, we wrote about a mother named Norma Galindo Gonzalez, a deeply loved mother and church leader in Colorado whom ICE had detained and was ready to deport.
Good news: After an outcry from hundreds of supporters around the state, attention from the media and pushing from elected officials, Norma was release back to her family. People wrote faxes, sent emails, made phone calls, and hounded the press until Norma was released. Norma made it back home just in time for Mothers’ Day—and just in time for her son Hector’s high school graduation (Hector has earned a full scholarship to Duke University in the fall).
“Being without my family is the hardest thing I have had to experience,” Norma said shortly after her release. “Just the thought of missing one of my son’s most important events in his life is heartbreaking. I am deeply grateful for all the people who helped me come back home.”
It should be noted, however, that ICE has only granted Norma a one-year stay of removal. This means she’ll be up for review again next year and that she won’t get a work permit. This is a disturbing trend by ICE that in the majority of cases, immigrants granted relief from deportation are no longer being granted the work permits that give them some semblance ofstability in their lives and some way to provide for themselves and their families. We are thrilled that Norma is back with her family, but we won’t stop fighting until she gets a work permit, and DHS makes good on its promise and makes granting work permits the norm.