Last week, CNN aired a lengthy report on the case of Daniela Pelaez, a senior from Miami who is appealing an immigration court’s decision that would send her and her younger sister Dayana back to their native Colombia. Pelaez is the senior valedictorian at her south Florida high school, and she is waiting to hear from several Ivy League schools where she hopes to enroll in the fall. Watch the report:
When Republicans in Congress filibustered the most recent attempt to pass the DREAM Act in the summer of 2010, President Obama responded by instructing his administration’s Department of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement to adjust its criteria for pursuing the deportation of undocumented students in an attempt to curb what had become a string of very public attempts to expel students from the country. To their credit, ICE said they will delay deporting Pelaez at least as long as her appeal is pending.
But without legislative action, President Obama’s new policy directive falls well short of true immigration reform. A spokesperson for Immigrations and Customs Enforcement said on Monday that the President’s new policy is in place, yet cases like Pelaez are still cropping up on a regular basis.