In January, President Barack Obama, during his State of the Union (SOTU) speech, hinted that he would introduce such reforms that would let all the immigrants in the country lead a better life. He promised the “broken immigration system” of the United States would be fixed.
“When people come here to fulfill their dreams -- to study, invent, contribute to our culture -- they make our country a more attractive place for businesses to locate and create jobs for everybody. So let's get immigration reform done this year. Let’s get it done. It’s time,” Obama said.
However, a report released by the New York Times on Monday revealed how the president – even four months into 2014 – wasn’t doing enough to stop the rampant deportation of undocumented immigrants. In fact, nearly two million people have been sent back to their countries ever since Obama took office in the year 2009.
The alarming figures prompted nationwide protests this week called “Two Million Two Many” in almost 40 cities against the U.S. administration’s draconian immigration policies which are – according to the demonstrators – separating and dividing families.
A coordinated campaign initiated by LLC DREAM Action Coalition (DRM), the demonstrations urge Obama to scale back on mass deportations.
“Under President Obama, the United States of America has deported about 400,000 undocumented immigrants each year. That's an average of 1,100 people, many of them moms and dads and children, per day,” Sally Kohn, a CNN political commentator stated in an opinion blog.
Activists occupied the office of House Democratic Caucus chairman Xavier Becerra.
“The president could simply expand the deferred action program he created for immigrant youth and suspend deportations immediately,” Maru Mora Villalpando, founder of the group Latino Advocacy, told Al Jazeera America.
“We want to be at the doorstep of the president of the United States, so he doesn’t just hear from his advisors, but from families who are affected directly by his policies,” Cesar Vargas of DRM told BuzzFeed.
[CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article stated that DRM Coalition is a non-profit institution.]