Everybody should have a union…. It gives us a voice. It gives you the power to change things that need to be changed.

~ Leslie Williams, 32BJ Member, New Jersey

Friday, January 26, Francisco Acosta and Allies Celebrate Stay of Removal, Pledge Fight for All Immigrants

Posted 1/25/18 | Filed in

Immigrants join Sen. Richard Blumenthal, Middletown Mayor Dan Drew and allies to celebrate victory and pledge continuing fight for DACA, TPS, and targeted immigrants

WHAT: Francisco Is Home! Press conference

WHEN: 12:30 PM, Friday, January 26, 2018

WHERE: 32BJ SEIU Connecticut Offices
885 Wethersfield Avenue
Hartford CT

WHO: Supporters and speakers include: Francisco Acosta, TPS recipients Juan Mejia and Jose Zavala, DACA recipient and CT Students for a Dream member Jonathan Gonzalez, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, Middletown Mayor Dan Drew, State Representatives Mike D’Agostino, Matt Lesser, William Tong and Ed Vargas, 32BJ SEIU District Leader Juan Hernandez, Francisco Acosta’s Attorney Manuel Nieves, representatives from the Wesleyan University community, and others

HARTFORD, Conn. — On Friday, January 26 at 12:30 PM, immigrants and their allies will gather at the 32BJ SEIU offices in Hartford to announce the details of Wesleyan janitor Francisco Acosta’s six-month stay of deportation. The 59-year-old Wesleyan janitor was scheduled for removal to Colombia on Wednesday, January 24, but on Friday, Senator Richard Blumenthal called him to announce that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had issued a stay.

At the press conference, Senator Blumenthal will join Mayor Dan Drew, 32BJ District Leader Juan Hernandez and others to thank the community for its support while also stressing the importance of continuing to fight for Francisco, as well as hundreds of thousands of other immigrants who now losing their status and facing the possibility of deportation. This includes 800,000 DACA recipients brought to this country as children, hundreds of thousands of immigrants living under Temporary Protected Status for decades, and countless others like Francisco whose permission to remain is now being revoked by the Trump Administration. Speakers at the press conference will include Juan Mejia and Jose Zavala, both 32BJ members and TPS recipients from El Salvador who have lived and worked legally in this country for over 15 years and are now in danger of losing their status. Also speaking is DACA recipient Jonathan Gonzalez, an honors student at SCSU, double majoring in economic and mathematics. Jonathan will graduate this year and take a gap year before starting law school. He hopes to become an immigration / human rights lawyer.

“We are overjoyed that Francisco Acosta has been granted more time to make his case against his unjust deportation, and we want to thank the steadfastness of our elected officials and the local community,” said Juan Hernandez, District Leader of 32BJ SEIU, Francisco Acosta’s union. “But we also recognize that this is a temporary victory, and in most cases the Trump Administration continues its senseless and cruel pursuit of many groups of immigrants in our country. Francisco proves we can win, but we need to continue to build our resistance against the anti-immigrant policies of the Trump administration and to urge Congress to join us in this resistance by passing a clean DREAM Act, by providing relief to hundreds of thousands of TPS holder, and by demanding an end to this inhumane and un-American assault on hard-working members of our community.”

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With 163,000 members in eleven states and Washington, D.C., including 4,500 in Connecticut, 32BJ SEIU is the largest property service workers union in the country and one of the largest unions representing immigrant workers in the country.

For More Information

Frank Soults, 860-471-5692, fsoults@seiu32bj.org