THE BRONX - Many American-born children in the borough have parents who are facing deportation, a situation that immigration groups are calling "disastrous."
Families in this situation are asking lawmakers for help. The New Sanctuary Movement and Families for Freedom sponsored a vigil in front of Sen. Chuck Schumer?s office on Saturday, asking him to support a piece of legislation that would allow immigration judges to consider the welfare of children whose parents are facing deportation.
The Child Citizen Protection Act was introduced by congressman Jose Serrano and recognizes that the U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants are, in fact, legal citizens.
?Senator Schumer a couple of months ago said he would speak with congressman Serrano about it,? Betsy Dewitt said. ?We have yet to get any answers from Senator Schumer.? Dewitt?s husband was deported.
Parents and kids spoke out at the vigil, even though for some it was too late to keep their loved ones in the states. ?Maybe one day our voices will be heard, and something will overcome what we are actually going through,? Betzaida Lampe said. Lampe?s husband was deported.
Currently, immigration judges are not allowed to consider an immigrant?s family ties to the U.S. when ruling on a deportation order.
The act has strong support throughout the state. Just last month, City Council passed Resolution 1250 in support of it. The rally will continue on Thursday, when thousands across the country will call for an end to deportations.