By Norlan Flores, Coalicion de Derechos Humanos
December 23, 2015
A few months ago, my wife gave birth to our beautiful daughter. After the birth, I rushed home to change clothes and shower, but on my way I was stopped by a police officer. I was undocumented at the time, and when he learned this the officer turned me in to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, who sent me to an immigration processing center.
I had been deported from the U.S. six years earlier and because I came back, I was charged with “illegal reentry” and processed under a little-known program called Operation Streamline.
Operation Streamline punishes immigrant families for trying to be together and wastes taxpayer dollars. Please sign my petition asking both the Senate and the House to vote that this program is not a success.
Even though my only crime was crossing the border without authorization, under Operation Streamline I was processed through the court in minutes and then sent to federal prison, where I spent three months away from my wife and newborn daughter. As the primary provider for our family, this was not only emotionally painful but economically devastating.
This expensive program denies wastes taxpayer money by incarcerating people who have made valuable contributions to our country and denying immigrants the due process to which they have a right under the Constitution. These “en masse” proceedings give people fewer rights than someone charged with a speeding ticket. According to the Office of the Inspector General, it has not even proven effective in reducing migration, yet the Senate is currently considering a resolution that would call it a “success.” By prosecuting people with potentially valid asylum claims, we might even be in violation of international treaties. If this resolution passes, it will become much more difficult to stop these senseless prosecutions and easier to expand Operation Streamline.
Tell the Senate and the House that Operation Streamline is bad for taxpayers and bad for families.
I came to the U.S. to make a better life for my family; I work hard to provide for my children and send money home to my parents in Nicaragua. No one should go to prison for that.
Norlan Flores, End Operation Streamline and Coalición de Derechos Humanos
Sign the petition: