Arizona has been an important player in the debate over immigration reform for some time now, and as Congress prepares to adjourn for 2013 with no progress still having been made on the issue, some of the tales coming from the Grand Canyon State might heavily affect their actions next year.
Maria “Guadalupe” Arreola remains in great danger of being deported, as she has for almost a year now. Her daughter, Arika Andiola, who came to the United States as an undocumented immigrant when she was just 11 years old, used to work for Representative Kyrsten Sinema as a district outreach director after getting a work permit thanks to the 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, but became increasingly frustrated due to the lack of movement on immigration reform and left that position in order to concentrate her efforts on fighting to keep her mother in the United States.
“Unfortunately for me, a year has passed and we haven’t passed immigration reform and I became very frustrated,” Andiola noted to the Arizona Republic. “I wasn’t just a staffer there trying to make a career out of it.” Sinema has been one of the House of Representatives’ most active members on the issue of immigration reform, fighting for a national DREAM Act and a pathway to US citizenship.
A similar story is shared by Arizona Army National Guard member Gabriel Zermeno, who is serving his country while under threat of seeing his father deported.