Activists and supporters gathered in Hartford in hopes of stopping the deportation of a New Britain man.
Mariano Cardoso Sr. has a check-in with Immigration Customs Enforcement on Thursday and may be told to buy a plane ticket.
“I have fought for the Cardoso family before, and I will fight for them again," said Sen. Richard Blumenthal. "Mariano Cardoso deserves to remain at home with his family in New Britain—where he is raising his U.S. citizen children, working, paying taxes and contributing to his community. There is absolutely no reason to break up this family while an approved application to adjust Mariano Cardoso’s status is pending. I urge ICE not to take this unnecessarily cruel action and grant Mariano the time he deserves to see his petition through. No family should have to suffer such ongoing fear and uncertainty, and their strength and love inspires me to act.”
Cardoso and his family were described by their neighbors as pillars of the community. He has lived in the U.S. for more than 27 years. Cardoso and his wife raised a daughter and two sons in the city.
Following the rally, Cardoso checked in with ICE and was told to buy a ticket for Nov. 17 to leave the country, according to Carolina Bortolleto, who is the communications and grant manager for Connecticut Students for a Dream.
"To target him for removal now will tear a family apart and clearly demonstrates how this administration is indiscriminately deporting individuals who pose no risk to this country. We will keep fighting with our community to keep Mariano Sr home. We will not remain silent as ICE continues to criminalize and destabilize our communities," Bortolleto said in a statement on Thursday.
Advocates said in 2008, Cardoso and his son were apprehended as part of statewide raids. They spent weeks in federal custody.
Cardoso said he's been trying to fix his status and become a citizen.
In 2011, Immigration Customs Enforcement gave him a letter ordering him to leave the country in 30 days. However, ICE ultimately decided he could remain in the country for humanitarian reasons.
However, that changed this year with the Trump Administration. In August, ICE sought to deport him again in accordance with changes in the Department of Homeland Security.
Thursday's rally happened at the Ribicoff Federal Building on Main Street in Hartford.
Cardoso is scheduled to appear in court on Nov. 17.
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