To: Scott Sutterfield, Director of the New Orleans ICE Field Office; Brian Acuna, Assistant Director of the New Orleans ICE Field Office

Jose Torres rebuilt New Orleans. Now ICE wants to deport him.

Jose Torres rebuilt New Orleans. Now ICE wants to deport him.

Dear Director Sutterfield and Assistant Director Acuna,

Please consider using your power of discretion to allow Mr. Jose Torres, who is currently in Sanctuary, to remain in the United States with his family. His daughters, Julissa and Kimberly, love him and hope that one day, he'll be able to come home to them.

In 2005, Jose came to the United States as an 18-year-old with dreams of achieving a better life for himself and his family. However, upon arriving in the country, Jose became a victim of human trafficking. After escaping, Jose made his way to New Orleans where he helped reconstruct the city after it was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Eventually, he settled down there, raising a family with his partner, Deiny.

Like most of us, Jose's daughters are the driving force in his life. His youngest daughter, Kimberly, was born premature and has suffered from life-threatening seizures since birth. In those early days, Jose would wake up at 5 AM to go to the hospital every day and make sure his daughter was okay. His wife, Deiny, says that Jose and his daughters are inseparable. The thought of his being deported to El Salvador, where he would be in mortal danger, is unbearable to them.

Politicians would have us believe that undocumented immigrants and other people of color are the root of this country's problems. But this is a scapegoat and a way to avoid addressing the deep-seated inequalities in our society. Spending billions of dollars to criminalize and destroy millions of families hurts all of us.

Jose is a leader in his community. He established a designated space in his community of Gretna, Louisiana for low-wage workers to seek work safe from wage theft and criminalization, and has spoken out in D.C. against the abuses of the private prison industry.

It is fully within your office's power to stop Jose's deportation and allow him to stay in the United States. I urge you to use that power for good. Jose belongs with his daughters. Please consider the gravity of Jose’s situation and allow him to stay in the United States with his family.

Why is this important?

Jose Torres is a father and immigrant leader who has decided to take a stand against the scapegoating of his family and the entire immigrant community.

As an 18 year old recently arrived to the United States, Jose survived and escaped human trafficking. He made his way to New Orleans, where he found work rebuilding the city after Hurricane Katrina. He has worked in construction there ever since and has raised his family in the city of Gretna in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana.

Jose took Sanctuary at New Orleans's First Grace United Methodist Church on November 15, 2017 because, in his own words, "it's every parent's responsibility to go to the ends of the earth for their children."

Jose’s two daughters suffer from chronic health conditions that require Jose’s constant support: Kimberly has had a life-threatening seizure disorder since birth, and Julissa has chronic tonsillitis. Jose drives them to doctor’s appointments, fills their prescriptions, and makes sure they get the love and care all children need.

Jose has been a long-time leader in his community. He established a designated space in his community of Gretna, Louisiana for low-wage workers to seek work safe from wage theft and criminalization, and has spoken out in D.C. against the abuses of the private prison industry.

It is fully within the New Orleans Immigration and Customs Enforcement office's authority to stop Jose's deportation. Jose belongs with his daughters in the city that he helped rebuild. Sign today to keep them together.