On the occasion of the Presidents' Day celebrations, pro-immigrant groups launched Monday a national campaign asking Barack Obama to sign an executive order ending deportations.
"Latino immigrant leaders and allies launch a campaign asking the President to use 'The Power of the Pen' to provide immediate relief from deportation to undocumented immigrants," the National Alliance of Latin American and Caribbean Communities, or NALACC, said in a statement.
The group notes that Obama said he will use his presidential authority to sign executive orders that will make sure the country continues to progress when Congress fails to act, and that it considers immigration reform to be in exactly that situation.
"Our families are still living in fear as more than 1,000 people continue to be deported every single day, most of whom have committed no other infraction than living in this country without an immigrant visa," NALACC Board President Claudia Lucero said.
"Instead of making excuses for the continuation of this inhumane deportation machine, President Obama should use his authority as chief executive to end it," she said.
The Senate passed a bipartisan immigration reform bill last June, but the Republican-controlled House of Representatives has yet to take up the measure.
"As our elected officials drag their feet and fail to fix our broken immigration system, it makes sense to stop breaking families apart in the service of enforcing a deeply inhumane, immoral and obsolete policy," Oscar Chacon, NALACC's executive director, said.
NALACC announced that starting Monday, the member organizations and their allies will launch a series of local and national actions that will keep building gradually to stop the deportations.