On December 19th, my dad received a call-in-letter from U.S Homeland Security stating that he was to show up on January 24, 2018 to “review his status” in this country. The whole time leading up to the Homeland appointment was extremely stressful for him. He barely ate or slept. Let alone leave his room.
In preparation for this appointment, my family and I searched for a lawyer. My dad paid $500 for a lawyer to accompany him to his appointment. The day of the appointment came and I decided to go with him. The night before the appointment, the lawyer did not call him to explain to him any procedures or tell him where exactly they would be meeting. Then the day of the appointment, the lawyer decides to show up an hour late. Very unprofessional. You get what you pay for.
That same day, my father was detained and housed at the Bergen County Jail. I walked in with my dad and left without him. I had to break the news to my mother at a Mcdonald’s where she was waiting for us. It was time for me and my mom to tell my younger sister that our dad would not be coming home (one of the most difficult things that I had to do). Since the day my dad has been detained, days have been slow and financially stressful. Before he was detained, he was head of household. He payed rent, utilities, food, EVERYTHING. Now I am responsible for all of that and more. My mom can’t work because she has arthritis and doesn’t have working papers. So we only have one source of income. I didn’t want to start a GoFundMe because I was too proud. I didn’t want to admit that I needed help. But this has proven to be far more difficult. The money that I make is not enough for the cost of living AND a lawyer. It is why I resorted to this platform to help my dad pay for his lawyer expenses. My dad has been with us through everything and always looked out for what was best for my sister and I. Now it’s my turn to do everything to help him. Thank you for reading and your help.
- stephanie bermeo
- America Cardenas
- Anh Le
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