The reason I could never fix my immigration status!

Since the death of George Floyd and with the eruption of protests across the United States and the world, many people are  watching the documentary that features my story, and which shows how the immigration system is broken and unfair. Just like the criminal justice.

More people are reaching out to me to expressing how disgusted they feel for the way my family was treated. Many are asking the same question: Why was I never able to fix my immigration status despite being married to a US veteran and having two U.S.-born children. I think the Netflix documentary and many other interviews I have done, clearly explain the reasons that I was never able to fix my status.

Still, I understand how an American that doesn’t have an immigrant spouse or immigrant friends could find this difficult to comprehend. Most Americans think that when you marry  an American you automatically get your green card. That is so far from the true, especially with the current president.

As I mentioned in the documentary. Past presidents didn’t fix the problem but no other president had the heart to deport Military spouses as they well know the sacrifices we made so that spouses can serve.

 Bill Clinton’s Law

In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed the harshest immigration bill that the nation had seen in decades.  The effects of this bill linger and hang over any efforts for “immigration reform.”

This law increases penalties on immigrants who had violated U.S. law trying to come into the country. Many like me, were given summary deportation orders without ever having the chance to see an immigration judge or a translator. When I was captured at the border and deported, I was forced to sign a document I didn’t understand, despite asking for the assistance of a translator multiple times.  The 1996 law made it almost impossible for undocumented immigrants like me who had not committed any other crimes, to stay in the country or to obtain any kind of relief despite marrying a U.S. citizen.

There are so many people that still live in the shadows hoping and praying for an immigration reform. I always hoped for that. That’s why I agreed to participate in the documentary, I didn’t receive any financial compensation or anything, I did it with the goal of educating people and creating awareness of the broken immigration laws. I did it hoping that when viewers watch my story, regardless of what political party they may belong, they will pressure their legislators to change the laws and undo the damage Clinton did.

It is true that the current president has put in place harsh immigration measures such “zero tolerance,” and that is the reason I am now here.(No other U.S. president would have deported people like me). However, it is also true that a Democrat president, Bill Clinton, ruined and continues to ruin thousands of lives by creating this law. Before I learned I was going to be deported, I didn’t have any political party preferences. I actually like Bush. I think he was a good person with strong morals.

I can only hope now with  elections  coming that a new president takes over and that he addresses this issue and repairs the damage that Bill Clinton and that the current president have done to immigrants, and many other minorities. In the meantime, I will continue to ask God to help those like me who are suffering the consequences of a bad president and their mean, cruel laws that only hurt American families.

Thank you for reading my blog, see you next time!

This picture was taken 4 years ago, during our first family vacation to New York. I was so happy , who would have tough that ICE was going to knock my door 4 days after and notified me that I was goint to be deported. Cosas de la vida!

Author: Alejandra Juarez

Wife of combat veteran deported to Mexico on August 3, 2018, with no criminal record after 22 years in the U.S., marriage, and children. Starting over. This is my story of hope after deportation. I hope by hearing my story as I'm healing and starting over, if you are going through something similar, you can know that just because you're being deported, your life is not over.

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