Free Ali Jamoos from US detention
$5000 have been transferred to pay the lawyer. We have attached is the first receipt in the update section and the second receipt will be uploaded end of the week. Ali's hearing is THIS week. During which we hope to rescind the expedited order of removal. We are very hopeful for a rapid process (on the span of 2-3 weeks) to get Ali out.
We thank all of you for allowing Ali to have a great legal representation and for the enormous support and love from all over the world.
Next, Ali will go through the legal process that will allow him to seek a new student visa.
This is the power of people! Raising $2000/hour we were able to reach our goal within almost two hours. Additional donations will support Ali throughout this difficult process beyond the initial lawyer costs. UWC network lawyers have already messaged us to tell us that Ali is most likely facing a long legal process that will far exceed the initial legal fees. So please keep donating and sharing. If anything is left at the end, it will be used to support similar cases, as Ali has gotten to know many people with similar situations that have been detained for several months already! (We will find the right charities; more on this as we progess along)
Our good friend and brother from Palestine, Ali Jamoos, is currently being detained at an immigration center in Florida. Ali is a graduate of United World College, New Mexico campus, and a student at the University of Florida. His hard work and dedication earned him a merit based 100% scholarship to the University of Florida. Anyone that has met him knows he is an extremely generous, kind-hearted man who always puts others before himself. When Ali is at home in Palestine with his 11 siblings, he takes care of everyone and manages their family business at the same time, since his father has been fighting with his health recently. Now it’s time that we help Ali.
Due to extreme psychological distress Ali has been experiencing the last few months (his father got really sick) and other personal reasons that have accumulated over the years he was living through the conflicts in Palestine, Ali was forced to do a medical withdrawal from classes for the Spring semester of 2017. As his paperwork was processing, Ali was picked up by US Border Protection on March 10th and has since been held at a detention center in Florida.
We have been friends with Ali for many years and despite all the hardships he went through in his life, we have never seen his smile fade away. Except last weekend. When we visited him at the detention center, he was worried about being deported and not being able to finish his UF degree and graduate. He has only 2 semesters left before graduation. If he is deported, he will get a 5 year ban from the US, and probably will never be able to return to UF to finish his degree. Let’s bring back Ali’s smile which kindled our life with joy.
Ali is being represented by a lawyer, who we are confident, will do everything she can do to get him out of the detention center as fast as possible. However, to get the best representation he can, he needs your help. The lawyer fees are estimates at $3,800, which he cannot afford alone. We are asking friends near and far to pitch in to help him. Most of us have experienced a financial crisis at one moment or another in our lives and have received help. Let’s show Ali some love. The campaign goal inlcudes the roughly 8% that GoFundMe charges for processing.
Disclosure for GoFundMe: Angie Aguirre will be the beneficiary of the campaign, as she is a very good friend of Ali, and is currently in Miami. She meets regularly with Ali and the detention center and will transfer the funds to Ali's lawyer.
Thank you for reading this and giving whatever you can!
Peace and love,
His brothers and sisters from the University of Florida and UWC
I want to start by saying thank so much for your support and being there for me. The 51 days I spent detained by the Department of Homeland Security were very unpleasant to say the least. Walking in into the office of DHS office, hands handcuffed behind my back, a big banner read, “With honor and integrity, we will safeguard the American people, our homeland, and our values”. However, the way I was treated by the DHS officers at the port of entry was nothing short of disgusting. They acted like a bunch of thugs and were very disrespectful, and the fact that I pointed out their unprofessionalism to their supervising officer made things much worse for me. Their disregard for proper conduct is a direct result of the lack of accountability. The supervising officer pointed out that since I was neither a citizen nor a permanent resident “I had no rights”, he said it with such a smug attitude. I’ve always had problems with visas and secondary inspections by DHS officers at all ports of entry I came through into the country but I was never treated like this before. It breaks my heart to see the first line representatives of the American people to the rest of the world become what they are now.
Ever since the September 15, 2010, the first time I entered the United States, I have met so many good people who fill the world with hope and promise of a better future; although I’m most likely never going to be granted a visa to enter the United States ever again, I never stopped believing in these people in this country. If anything, this situation strengthened my belief in the UWC mission and made me even more determined to live the UWC mission. We cannot allow the few rotten apples amongst us in this world ruin it for the rest of us. I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life and I am very hopeful of the future. The support everyone showed by calling, visiting, donating, and praying for me was overwhelming and reinforced my belief that biggest treasure that I have is the people I’ve crossed paths with through out my journey in the U.S. (UWC, UF and all the places in between) and everywhere else. I am so proud and honored to call you all my family. I look forward to the day I’ll be able to start paying back this goodness and support.
For the entirety of the time of my detention my father was hospitalized and had his left kidney removed. He was hanging by a thread due to complications after the surgery. I have no idea how I would have managed pulling through the darkest of these days if I didn’t have such a big supporting team that was there for me every step of the way. The silver lining to this ordeal was that I was shown that I have a lot of true friends who went far and beyond to be there for me, and for that I will forever be thankful. My wish is I will always be able to be there for everyone who’s been there for me and I hope to continue making new friends regardless of where I end up. I hope I’ll cross paths with all of you again under better circumstances.
I love you with all my heart and please keep on smiling and loving life, I know that I am ☺ <3
Throughout the past few weeks, Ali has had multiple court sessions. Despite all efforts, unfortunately, his case was declined and Ali is being sent back on a flight to Amman (and then Palestine) today (May 1st) He also received a 5 year ban to enter the US. The past few weeks have been very stressful for him.
The amount of support Ali has received is truly phenomenal. His campaign was on GoFundMe US trending for a week; he collected 276 gracious donations, and over 1500 social media interactions. We raised $8,755: 10% goes to Gofundme, $4500 was used as lawyer fees, and $100 was used for expenditures while at the detention center.
Ali will post an update here when he gets back home, so you can contact him directly. He will also explain what exactly the remainder of the funds will be used for.
On the bright side, many very helpful people from the UWC and UF community have also already gotten in touch with him to discuss all the steps he needs to take in order to be able to finish his Bachelor's degree (via options like online-classes, study abroad, etc.).
Thank you very much again for your support!
Unfortunately, we received bad news about Ali's case. Ali was declined to stay in the U.S. and is now being processed for removal. He asked for a judicial review which will occur within 7 days. Although it is extremely unlikely for judge to over turn this decision, let's cross our fingers!
We will keep everyone posted here about any updates we receive.
Ali, please tell me you are able to finish your degree or that you have finished it since you were very close.
Have you tried contacting pro bono immigration lawyers? You might try contacting AILA about this.
I'm so touched at how much money has been raised... surpassing the goal. This goes to show how people are really feeling regarding this ridiculous treatment toward Muslims. It warms my heart despite how hard it is to comprehend that this is an issue at all.