Dream Activist

#BringThemHome: Sandra: "Peru is Not Safe For Gay People"!

Sandra is so ready to come home. She lived in the U.S. for 13 years and only left to take an incredible opportunity in Spain. Now she is stuck back in Peru, where homophobia puts her in danger constantly. #BringSandraHome

Sign the petition & call ICE; ask them to grant permission for Sandra to come home.

Call immigration in D.C. @ 202-732-3000

Sample script: “Hi, I am calling to ask that ICE grant parole for Sandra Paloma. She needs to return to her family in the U.S. and to further her career in photography. She faces discrimination on a daily basis in Peru because she is gay. Sandra should be back with her family, bring her home!"

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The Petition

To John Sandweg, Acting Director of ICE:

I write to ask that you grant humanitarian parole to Sandra Jara so she can return to her mother in California and escape homophobia in Peru. Sandra grew up in the United States but, after years of attempts to get a higher education here, was forced to seek alternatives in other countries. Now she finds herself in her native Peru without her family and facing homophobia.

Sandra, now 31, lived in the United States for 13 years. She came with her single mother in search of a chance at higher education. Her mother had lost her job in Peru and making ends meet was becoming increasingly more difficult. At 15 years old, Sandra enrolled in Los Angeles’ Alhambra High School and later attended Pasadena City College where she worked with the LGBT community as president of the, then called, United Rainbow Alliance providing young people with a safe place to talk about their concerns and fears. There, she also found her passion for Photography and graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Arts and Science in June of 2004. 

Despite her many degrees and academic honors, Sandra’s undocumented status prevented her from furthering her education because she could not afford out of state tuition, and she could not be promoted to a management position at her job. She attended college on and off while working as a freelance photographer. Sandra applied and was accepted to a two-year program in Spain. With the purpose of furthering her studies, she took a chance and returned to Peru. However, her student visa was denied twice, trapping her in a country where she does not belong, where homophobia is commonplace.

In recent years, police brutality against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in Peru has sparked fear among the members of that community. Along with fearing for her safety from the people that are supposed to protect her, Sandra, as a queer woman, would face day to day discrimination in her native country.

“Peru is a country filled with rich history, beautiful people and amazing food, but it is also filled with heavily religious (and very homophobic) beliefs that only add to my desire to go back to my real home, where my mother is now.” 

Sandra hopes to return to her home and family in the United States and pursue her passion for photography where is can openly be herself. I urge you to grant Sandra’s request for parole so she may return home.

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