1,000 signatures reached
To: Leon Rodriguez, Director, US Citizenship and Immigration Services
Grant DACA to Law School Graduate and Undocumented Leader Lizbeth Mateo
Approve Lizbeth Mateo's request for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Since she applied for DACA in October 2015, USCIS has sent Lizbeth two letters of intent to deny due to her participation in the Bring Them Home campaign. The first letter came only days after her law school graduation. Denying Lizbeth’s request for DACA would send a message that political expression in support of immigrants’ rights will be punished.
Why is this important?
Lizbeth Mateo is an undocumented law graduate and activist. She came to the United States with her family at that age of 14 and enrolled in high school right away, where she quickly learned English.
Lizbeth always had her eye on higher education, but knew that her undocumented status would present challenges to her and students like her. So, Lizbeth began organizing, working with other youth, school administrators, and community members to fight for the rights of the undocumented community. Lizbeth was one of the first undocumented youth to risk deportation, to demand the immediate passage of the Dream Act, when she was arrested for stating a sit in inside Senator McCain’s office in 2010.
Despite the failure of the Dream Act, Lizbeth continued her work with the immigrant community. But she knew the pain of so many young people who had been forced to return to Mexico due to family separation, so in 2013 Lizbeth left the country briefly, traveled to Mexico as part of the Bring Them Home campaign, and returned with eight other youth.
The Dream 9, as they came to be known, demanded to be allowed to return home to their families and called for immediate family reunification. Lizbeth and the Dream 9 were allowed to return home after 17 days in detention. Lizbeth returned home just in time to attend Santa Clara University School of Law, from where she graduated this past May.
Since she applied for DACA in October 2015, USCIS has sent Lizbeth not one but two letters of intent to deny due to her participation in the Bring Them Home campaign. The first letter came only days after her law school graduation. Lizbeth has received the support of several members of Congress, the Dean of Santa Clara Law, law professors, organizations, and community members.
Denying Lizbeth’s request for DACA would send a message that political expression in support of immigrants’ rights will be punished. As professors, academic professionals, attorneys, and members of the community, we ask that USCIS reconsiders its Notice of Intent to Deny and grant Lizbeth’s DACA application.