Lidiane Carmo survived the Interstate 75 Florida crash that happened over the weekend but all her immediate family members were among the five of the eleven casualties. As Lidiane recovers from broken bones and the loss of her parents and siblings, her church family in Atlanta is trying to make sure she is not deported to Brazil.
The Carmo family came to America when Lidiane was only two years old. Although she has attended school and church activities like most American children, the paperwork was never filed to document her as an American Citizen. Now as the Carmo family's bodies are prepared to be sent to Brazil for proper burial, will Lidiane be sent to her home country permanently as well?
Although the family was originally in the United States with visas, however, they expired; even so, the family continued to stay in the country illegally. Over the weekend the family was traveling to attend a religious conference when they were involved in the multiple vehicle crash in Florida. Representatives from Brazil have reportedly been in contact with the family's church and are gathering information on the situation. How to deal with illegal, or undocumented citizens has been a constant discussion in Washington. With so much attention surrounding this case and the reality that the teen doesn't even speak Spanish, everyone will be watching closely to see how this situation is handled by authorities.
Obama's administration has deported record numbers of illegal immigrants; however, the majority of those immigrants had a criminal record. With all the media attention this story is getting, it is very unlikely Obama will be deporting this young fifteen-year-old girl who has already suffered enough. Charles Kuck, an Atlanta immigration attorney, feels Lidiane will not be deported because of a federal law granting special status to juveniles. He stated, "Lidiane can become a ward of the state and be issued a green card, allowing her to stay." Hopefully, Lidiane will be able to return to her church family in Atlanta and continue to live the American dream that her parents so badly wanted for her.
This AP photo shows part of the wreckage on Interstate 75 where five members of the Carmo family died.
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