DREAM Act Debacle: Lowell High School Grad Set For Deportation

Categories: Immigration
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Melissa Lee works the cameras
Congress failed again last month to corral the needed votes to put the DREAM Act back on the table -- and the fallout looks something like this:

Eighteen-year-old Elizabeth Lee was on a successful trajectory; she had graduated from Lowell High School - the city's most prestigious public high school - last year and was planning to study social work at UC-Berkeley.

That was until she found out that she and her 16-year-old brother, Felix, a junior at Lowell, are being deported Jan.19. after a decade of living in San Francisco.

The two teens and their mother, Melissa, lost their claim for asylum and are now being forced to go back to Peru.

The DREAM ACT, about which we wrote a cover story last summer, would give immigrants who came to the United States as children and attend college or join the military, a pathway to citizenship.

The two Lee teenagers and their mother were granted a humanitarian stay until
this month -- and immigrant activists are hoping this gives them enough time to help.

Mission Dolores church, where the family has attended services for years, contacted  immigration activists who are packing the pressure on authorities to grant the family another stay while they pursue other avenues of becoming legal residents.

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No parade here: Melissa and Felix Lee march with Steve Li, left, at a prayer service for the Lees at Mission Dolores last month.

This case is eerily familiar to that of Steve Li, the 20-year-old City College student who became a poster child of the DREAM ACT issue as he awaited deportation. The Li case prodded Senator Dianne Feinstein to introduce a private bill that would block his deportation. Li was released from a immigration detention facility in Arizona after a six-week detainment.

Immigration advocates are sending a warning.

"The reality is we don't have a DREAM Act. It didn't pass and now we're going to see a lot of these cases coming up," said Emmanuelle Leal, an organizer with the San Francisco Organizing Project.

Activists and the family will have a press conference at the Mission Dolores church Thursday at 1:30 p.m. Supervisor David Campos and Lowell Principal Andrew Ishibashi are scheduled to attend.


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Photos provided by Emmanuelle Leal 

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infidel
infidel

I though the DREAM was for strictly for Mexicans. I don't recall seeing any Peruvian flags at the big rallies.

Federale
Federale

And what about the American kid who did not get into Lowell because an illegal alien had one of the limited spots?

TeddyK
TeddyK

Melissa Lee has consistently lied and cheated at every level of her life to get ahead and provide better lives for her children at the expense of others. They live in South San Francisco, not San Francisco, but lied on their application to get into Lowell. In addition, she was supposed to be deported back in 2004, yet again disregarded the law. Pursuit of the American dream is a tremendous opportunity for many immigrants, but we can't allow liars and cheats to move ahead of other deserving immigrants that obey the rules. Let this be a lesson and deterrent to others contemplating deception as a means to get ahead.

Grissomjohn73
Grissomjohn73

Reading this article and then the comments people make here about immigration in the U.S. makes me always conclude that the average U.S. citizen understand little about what the whole phenomenon of immigration. First, Why does the U.S. need immigrants? The answer is obvious: because it needs more workers to sustain economic growth. Second, Does the U.S. need immigrant right now? Honestly, I do not think so...The U.S. is today the third most populated country in the world after China and India. Third, Why do people immigrate to the U.S.? Well, here is where I see that the average U.S. citizen understands little. Some people immigrate into the U.S. legally, but a lot of people immigrate into the U.S. illegally. Why do people immigrate illegally into the U.S.? Well, First, people do whatever they can to go to the U.S. because in the U.S. they can find security from violence in their countries and better wages than in their countries. Here is where I keep seeing that the average U.S. citizen understand nothing about the causes of illegal immigration. First, There is violence in the many developing countries and therefore people leave and try to reach the U.S. but what the average citizen fails to acknowledge is that the presence of violence and undemocratic (dictators) governments in many countries is fully supported by the U.S. government. So, the average american citizen cannot understand that they cannot have it both ways: your government (yes the U.S. government) interferes in the internal affairs of many countries with very negative consequences for the local population...Many of the actions of the U.S. government are plain illegal based on international laws...the average american citizen either gives a blind eye to these violations from the U.S. government or the average citizen is just plain ignorant and cannot see farther than the legth of their noses...Now, the other part of illegal immigration: illegal aliens are worst than slaves: they work (if they find a job) for less than the minimum wage, live in really bad conditions, cannot open a regular bank account, illegal aliens risk their lives (yes, their lives) to reach the U.S., they are treated like $hit by the legal population, they are blamed for everything negative in the country, etc...I have a proposal, you want your country back without illegal immigrants (I know you do not want that, who is going to pick up the harvest??) then stop your government from interfering in the domestic affairs of other countries and stop invading other countries...You cannot have it both ways, the rest of the population of the earth deserves to be treated with dignity...One day your army will not be the strongest one and that day the U.S. is going to suffer...Now, I know that is not the average citizen of the U.S. the ones who want to invade and mess with other countries, I know that the average citizen is just used by the power elite as pawns on a chess board...the problem is that the rest of the world is just as ignorant about the invaders from the U.S. therefore, they blame the U.S. for many bad things that happen to them and they end up hating the U.S. as a whole....So, I advise both the U.S. citizens and the citizens of the rest of the world to get their facts straight and understand who the real enemy is. The actions american soldiers and politicians do in other countries I know for a fact that go against the will of the people of the U.S. the problem is that the regular citizen cannot fight this horrendous elite that has taken the U.S.

Realist
Realist

You stated that illegal immigrants: live in really bad conditions, cannot open a regular bank account

Not true. Bank of America offers "undocumented" bank accounts that function exactly like "regular" bank accounts. You don't need a Tax ID or SSN. They were specifically built so that illegals could get bank accounts. That's why I promtly closed my BofA account I had for over 25 years.

In addition, illegals in New Mexico get FULL SCHOLARSHIPS to the public universities there.

There is a reason that illegals are called illegals. Period.

__A_YAHOO_USER__
__A_YAHOO_USER__

you need to come to my state (NY now) and read about the illegals and how they get very little like you think. bogus post abotu that...but you do make valid points abotu some things.

Davebah80
Davebah80

when we deported a kids who grow up here is like making them start they life all over again. think about what work for everyone fine away how fix it for example who is good and who is bad then we can solve this problem about immigartion matter.

Davebab80
Davebab80

They dont even know about their country,comment sentence people stop talking about tax cause everyone do pay tax. they just dont gets thanks for it caues when they buy something they charge tax okok.

__A_YAHOO_USER__
__A_YAHOO_USER__

Silly Dave...when we Americans buy stuff also we are taxed but we also are taxed to suppot the feds and the states we live in. Kinda makes a "tiny" difference no? Try looking around you if indeed you are American. Go to states hit really hard by the troubling times here. See how kids, teens and adults need to cope withsi economic madness. We need to clean this up before we can help others. Harsh maybe...but I am of the mind set taht America needs to take care fo Americans and now.

Dave Francis
Dave Francis

If you want to save America from the illegal immigration occupation, you have to act now? You, as a citizen taxpayer have got to decide your children's future and your grand children's? If you want to end to the silent amnesties, the Dream Acts, the instant citizenship for babies of illegal aliens and the chain migration that ultimately follows, you must show what side of the financial aisle you are on? Everybody who is adamantly opposed to the illegal immigration invasion and the hundreds of billions of dollars that is taken annually from your payroll check. To eradicate the support every entitlement program, the free emergency hospital care and the unethical use of your money to school hundreds of thousands of illegal alien children that is overcrowding our schools nationwide. Demand from your Senators and Representatives to do their jobs, they are being paid to do? Insist your elected officials promoting the interests of every citizen and legal resident in our nation and not the 20 million plus of intruders.

Contact the Washington switchboard at 202-224-3121, to be connected with the lawmaker who is supposedly representing your rights.

To learn more about the invasion, costs and all the paramount problems associated with this nemesis, Go online to Google or other search application to understand the predicament that faces every taxpaying American. Don't listen to the lies and propaganda from the ACLU (American Communist Lawyers Union), governors, Mayors or elected officers, left wing press, religious zealots, corporate entities or any radical group. Many of these people are suffocating this country, with this Liberal extremist "Political Correctness" gobbledygooks? Until we put a halt to public entitlement and jobs to foreign nations, the hordes will always keep coming. DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH AND THEN JUDGE FOR YOURSELF?

mr ed
mr ed

Have her parents apologised to her for putting her in this terrible situation? Hopefully now they can go back home and legally apply - like EVERY legal immigrant.

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