Hello, my name is Qweyonnoh Parker. I am a 17 old, pretty normal American teenager with one horrific exception – my mother is threatened with deportation every year along with thousands of Liberians on Temporary Protected Status, after living here legally and contributing to Minnesota’s economy for nearly two decades. My mother is like thousands of other parents who are presently at risk of being separated from their children and spouses and sent back to Liberia.
I live in constant fear that one day my mother will be forcefully separated from me. At times, concentrating in school is a nearly impossible. I want to complete high school and go on to college. Besides God, I am alone and my mother is all I have. If she is deported, I am not sure what will become of me.
My mother came to this country 17 years ago seeking safety from the horrific civil war in Liberia. She has been a hard working, law abiding resident, has payed her taxes and been a contributing member of society. She is a wonderful mother who I love and who has always tried to provide a good life for her child. When I was younger, I didn’t really understand what it meant for me to be a citizen and my mom to not be one, so it didn’t seem to effect me. Now that I know what could happen, I’m terrified to even think about it.
Thousands of US Citizen children, most even younger than me, are living in my same situation: we are at risk of being separated from our parents and of being left alone or at the mercy of the state. What would we do? Who will care for us and make it possible for us to fulfill our dreams? Who would raise us properly, and when would we ever see our parents again?
President Obama, and members of Congress, I ask you to look into your hearts to understand the hurt this is doing to our families. Please help us by making sure Comprehensive Immigration Reform that keeps families together is a reality. Thank you.