NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — There were cheers and tears Wednesday afternoon following a surprise announcement that Nury Chavarria will be allowed to stay in the U.S. for now. An immigration court in Hartford granted the emergency stay after new evidence was presented in her case.
“God is good,” said Chavarria.
News 8 was first to sit down with the Norwalk mother of four just minutes after it was revealed she could go home. “I’m happy to go to my house to hug my kids,” she said.
Chavarria spent the past week trapped inside a New Haven church to avoid deportation to her native Guatemala after living illegally in the country the last 24-years. Yet, she said she never lost hope.
“I’ve been waiting for good news,” Chavarria remarked.
At least 200 supporters showed up to the church at what was supposed to be a march and rally for Chavarria, including New Haven Mayor Toni Harp. “Your voices made a difference,” the mayor told the raucous crowd.
When asked by News 8’s Mario Boone what she wanted to say to all of her supporters, Chavarria said, “I have to say thank you everyone for everything.”
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ICE has agreed not to continue removal efforts while the case winds through the courts.
On Wednesday night, Senator Blumenthal, Senator Murphy, Governor Malloy and Lieutenant Governor Wyman released statements about Nury Chavarria being allowed to stay in the country.
“Justice and reason have prevailed and Nury will be allowed to temporarily return to her home in Norwalk as we continue to fight for long-term relief. The facts in this case are clear and compelling, and I am hopeful that once granted her day in court Nury will be awarded the legal status she deserves. I remain in close contact with Nury, her legal team and advocates to provide all support possible to resolve this humanitarian nightmare. Nury’s plight is the direct result of an immigration system that has lost all sense of humanity—a betrayal of fundamental American values. As we fight for Nury and her family, I remain committed to comprehensive immigration reform to bring lasting justice to this badly broken system,” Blumenthal said.
“We can all breathe a small sigh of relief for the Chavarria family,” said Murphy. “I’m glad ICE finally listened to our calls for justice for Nury, and I’m grateful for all the community support she received. But this is just a temporary victory, and only when President Trump’s mean-spirited policy of tearing apart parents from their young children ends will meaningful justice be achieved. My staff and I will keep pushing ICE to make sure Nury can stay here at home in Connecticut pending Congress passing comprehensive immigration reform,” said Murphy.
Governor Malloy said, “Today, reason and compassion have prevailed. There was never a rational justification for Nury Chavarria to have been threatened with deportation and separated from her children, and I applaud this decision by ICE and the court to allow her to continue living and working in the United States with her family. Members of the community had their voices heard, and I am glad that we could work with federal and local officials and advocates to achieve this outcome. Immigrants are vital to the fabric of our nation. Rather than focusing on those living peacefully within our borders, our attention should be on those who do harm to others.”
Said Lt. Governor Wyman, “I commend ICE and the federal court on this decision. For years, Ms. Chavarria has abided by the requirements set forth by immigration officials in order to stay in this country, raise her children, go to work, and support her family. I’m grateful to the many advocates and the church community that took a brave stand to protect her, to fight for her, and to call attention to a situation that, if allowed to proceed unchecked, would not have furthered our national security interests. I hope Ms. Chavarria and her family are able to move past this traumatic situation and get back to their lives.”
News 8 will update this story as details become available.