Jonathan Arias and Min Ji Lee are trying to put faces on statistics, wanting to tell their own stories as well as those of other immigrants. People participating in the Keeping Our Families Together bus tour claim that their aim is to make certain that they can remain in the United States with their loved ones, and they are more than willing to speak publically to make their case.
“I was one year old when I got here and I feel like this is my country too,” Arias says. Min Ji Lee adds, “I came here when I was three, so I don’t have any memory of Korea. This is my home.”
Maria Galvan came to the United States from Mexico in 2000 along with her husband and their two daughters. Galvan says that she wants to keep her family together especially as they have careers in the US but they are not allowed to work here according to the law. Galvan expresses that immigration reform is badly needed to fix such a situation.
Now activists such as Galvan are taking their call for immigration reform on the road, with the first stop on the statewide bus tour being the Westside office of Senator Diane Feinstein. “A lot of the families are mixed status, so you will have a citizen, a resident, a temporary worker and undocumented person all in one family,” caravan participant Wendy Carillo says. Senator Feinstein offered her support for a pathway to citizenship in any immigration reform proposals.