AZ group holds vigil before immigration hearing

Posted at 11:29 PM, Apr 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-18 11:03:05-04

The future of millions of immigrant families will rest in the hands of the U.S. Supreme Court.

At issue: temporary relief for undocumented immigrants who were brought here as children, and also for their parents.

President Obama issued a series of executive orders regarding immigration that have been on hold after 26 states, including Arizona, filed a lawsuit challenging whether his actions were constitutional. 

Arguments in the case U.S vs. Texas will be heard at the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Monday morning.

The group Promise Arizona organized the 18-hour prayer vigil on the ground of the State Capitol in support of the Supreme Court upholding the President's orders to give families administrative relief.

"The safety and livelihood of literally millions of people are hanging in the balance," said Petra Falcon, executive director of Promise, AZ.

Taking part in the vigil were Bellem Selgado and her mother Isabel Moreno.

Selgado was born in the United States and had citizenship, but her mother who came here at the age of 16 was not a legal resident.

Selgado said everyday things like grocery shopping and going to school were fearful for the family, as they worried about their mom getting pulled over.

"I only have my brothers here. I'm scared that my mom could be deported some day, and I pray that she won't," said Selgado.

Moreno said she came to the United States to make money and support her family back in Mexico.

She too worried about leaving her children behind in the U.S. if she were to get deported. She also worried about the poverty and violence back in her homeland.

Ivonne Salazar, another undocumented single mother, worried about putting her children through college. All of her kids were U.S. citizens, but working in a janitorial job with no work visa, Salazar said the prospects for her improving her life were slim to none.

"It's scary. I don't have a driver's license, and my three children they depend on me. They don't have a father here," said Salazar.

Vigils like the one in Arizona are taking place throughout the nation, as the hearing hour draws close.