PRESS STATEMENT: Response to Father of Four Being Detained

March 2, 2017

Response to Father of Four Being Detained

On Tuesday a father of four in Los Angeles was detained by ICE while dropping off his daughters to school. Romulo Avelica-Gonzalez is undocumented and has been living in the United States for 25 years. His children are all U.S. citizens.

President Trump says he will only deport criminals, ‘bad hombres’. However, we knew this meant any undocumented person would be considered a criminal. It appears that Romulo’s has a DUI from 10 years ago, and purchasing a car with an improper registration sticker over 20 years ago. For an American to commit these acts the lexicon would not generally refer to them as “criminals”. But to nativists and nationalists, the core of Trump’s support, coming across the border at 1 years-old makes you a criminal.

DREAM Team Los Angeles knows no one is safe from ICE. Their own statistics show that the majority of people deported have committed no crime, yet President Trump used his recent address to showcase victims of violence at the hands of undocumented immigrants to portray all 11 million undocumented as criminals and a danger to the U.S.

If widespread immigration violence exists in our nation it is committed by the hands of ICE who commit violence by taking away fathers, mothers, never to be seen again. It is a violence against children that occurs every day and over many decades.

Cases like Romulo surface because he seems to be a “good” immigrant, supporting his wife and family for over 25 years. But what about the “bad” immigrants we never hear of? What about the felons that President Obama would priories over family members? We say that felons are family members too. Don’t deport Romulo because he is a good immigrant, rather don’t deport Romulo because he is a human being. 

We once again call for a moratorium against ALL deportations until a legislative solution can be found. To President Trump we say this; not one more. To our parents in detention facilities we say this; we love you, we will not forget you, we will never stop fighting for you.


DREAM Team Los Angeles seeks to create a space where undocumented immigrant youth become empowered through education and shared experiences, and develop as efficient advocates for their rights and those of the larger immigrant community.