NEW FAIRFIELD, CT – Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5), Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) sent a letter to U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) officials urging them to reconsider a deportation order issued for New Fairfield resident Joel Colindres.
Colindres has no criminal record and is married to an American citizen. Together they have two American-born children, ages six and two. Colindres, who fled violence in Guatemala to come to the United States 13 years ago, has been issued an order to leave the country by August 17.
Colindres is in the process of filing relevant applications that, if approved, will provide a pathway to legal status. Esty, Blumenthal, and Murphy wrote to ICE asking that Colindres be “granted every consideration possible to remain in the United States and continue his pathway to citizenship.”
“Mr. and Mrs. Colindres have two children, ages six and two,” Esty, Blumenthal, and Murphy wrote. “Not only does he share equal responsibility for caring for them, but he financially supports them. Although Mrs. Colindres works, the family is dependent on Joel’s income. If he were forced to be separated from his children, they would not only suffer emotionally, but could also face homelessness, as Mrs. Colindres cannot afford their mortgage payments on her income alone.”
“ICE has confirmed that Mr. Colindres has committed no crime, contributes to his community, is employed, pays taxes, and is raising a family,” Esty, Blumenthal, and Murphy wrote.
The lawmakers also expressed grave concern with the short period of time Colindres was given to voluntarily deport. The order to leave the country on August 17 was only issued July 20.
“We respectfully request information about the laws or regulations that contribute to the selection of a removal date in cases such as these, as well as any available information about how Mr. Colindres’s removal date was selected,” Esty, Blumenthal, and Murphy wrote.
A signed copy of the letter is available here.