Jeanette Vizguerra, the undocumented mother of four, (3 U.S. citizens + 1 DACA recipient) living in the sanctuary of a Denver Unitarian church, has been granted permission to stay in the United States through March 2019.
After living in sanctuary for 86 days, ICE informed her of her stay of removal, after previously issuing an order for deportation.
Through posting to her Facebook, and meeting with supporters, she has galvanized support for her cause, and generating a better understand of immigrants in America.
She is currently in the application process for a U-visa, and visa which is set aside for victims of crimes who have suffered mental or physical abuse – and are helping law enforcement with the investigation.
While she has previously been granted these assurances against deportation before, Trump’s presidency caused her, and many undocumented Americans, to treat their regular check-in appointments with ICE with caution. Deportations of people without criminal records have skyrocketed during the Trump-era, suggesting that previous assurances are no longer valid.
Vizguerra sought refugee in her Catholic parish first, but after they declined, she was welcomed at the First Unitarian Society of Denver. The mayor of Denver, Michael Hancock, has supported her, saying, “What’s happening to Jeanette Vizguerra is appalling.” Vizguerra was also recognized as one of TIME magazine’s “100 most influential people of 2017,” and was written about by America Ferrara.
Upon the publishing of the good news to Facebook, Jeanette wrote, “Yes si se pudo” – “Yes, Yes we did.”