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LULAC Calls on Obama Administration and DHS to Exercise Prosecutorial Discretion and Release Immigrant Advocate Jose Antonio Vargas

July 15, 2014

Contact: Jossie Flor Sapunar

National Latino Civil Rights Organization Also Expresses Concern Over the Mass Deportation of Young Children

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the League of United Latin American Citizens released the following statement from Brent Wilkes, LULAC National Executive Director, on news that Mr. Jose Antonio Vargas had been detained at the McAllen-Miller International Airport in South Texas.

“Our organization is very concerned about the recent apprehension and detention of Mr. Jose Antonio Vargas at the McAllen-Miller International Airport in South Texas. Mr. Vargas is a renowned journalist and immigrant rights advocate who, like countless other aspiring Americans, is caught up in legal limbo as a result of our broken immigration system. Under the constant threat of deportation, Mr. Vargas has worked tirelessly to ensure that the American people hear the stories and voices of the immigrant community.

“Today, LULAC stands behind Mr. Vargas and calls on President Obama and DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson to exercise prosecutorial discretion and release Mr. Vargas immediately.

“For weeks, news outlets have been reporting about scarce resources available for the border patrol, ICE, and other agencies trying to stave off criminals and drugs from entering our country. In light of this, it makes absolutely no sense to expend limited resources detaining and deporting people like Mr. Vargas and the countless other innocent migrant children.

“Mr. Vargas’ detention comes one day after a the Administration carried out a mass deportation of innocent women and children from New Mexico to San Pedro Sula, Honduras, arguably one of the most violent cities in the world according to the State Department.

“On behalf of the 135,000 members of the League of United Latin American Citizens, I urge President Obama to stop expending scarce resources apprehending people like Mr. Vargas, who is an exemplary model of an aspiring American, and put an end to any deportations of migrant children.”

The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit www.LULAC.org.

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