After three months of living in fear of deportation while in sanctuary at Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission Church, we are thrilled that some good news has come to Beatriz Santiago Ramirez.
Beatriz, an undocumented immigrant who came to the U.S. more than 10 years ago, has been pursued by authorities recently. This occurred even though she is eligible for a U-visa after undergoing a sexual assault and fully cooperating with the resulting investigation. If deported, she would have been separated from her two American-born children.
Last week an immigration judge in Chicago re-opened her case, meaning her application for legal status can be considered. She is no longer in immediate danger of deportation and if her application is approved, she will be authorized to work in the U.S. and may ultimately receive citizenship.
On Monday, Nov. 3, 2014, JCUA Executive Director Judy Levey, along with other religious leaders, spoke in support of Beatriz and the recent good news at a press conference at Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission. The press conference was organized by Fr. José Landaverde, who leads the church housing Beatriz and her children; along with Pastor Sara Wohlleb, the Congregational Coordinator at the Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America. CRLN oversees the Chicago New Sanctuary Coalition (CNSC), a group of religious congregations that house undocumented immigrants in danger of deportation.
This press conference was follow-up to a previous one held at the same location on Sept. 29.