Tuesday, May 24, 2011

U.S. Holds Beloved Husband, Local Hero in ICE Detention (Change.org)

U.S. Holds Beloved Husband, Local Hero in ICE Detention
by Danny Rangel · May 23, 2011

March 30th was a seemingly ordinary Wednesday for Nazry Mustakin, who awoke and got ready for work just as he'd done many times before. Then, Nazry (his wife and his friends call him Naz) heard an authoritative knock on the door of his Waco, Texas home. Four armed agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) stood on his front porch, dressed in riot gear.

Naz's wife, Hope, was baffled as officers entered her home only to inform the newlywed couple that Naz's green card had been revoked. As federal agents took Naz away, Hope was left alone, confused and terrified. Naz is a model citizen, beloved in his community for his commitment to service, his dedication to the indigent, and his deep faith in God. Now, Naz faces deportation proceedings as he waits in a federal detention facility 60 miles away from home.

No doubt, this event would strain anyone's marriage, but Naz and Hope have not given up. The 25-year-old Hope has made a remarkable new life out of fighting for her husband's release. Hope's website, WeSupportNaz.com is the focal point of her struggle to keep Naz from being deported to his native Singapore. The website is essentially an online grassroots campaign that features support letters, fundraising tools, supporter videos, local news coverage, an active newsfeed, and a petition sponsored by Change.org.

What Hope has done is truly inspirational, and the support she's received is a testament not only to her work ethic, but to the kind of man Naz Mustakin is. An active member of his local church, Naz has taken the lead on several faith-based community service programs. He is active in both local and regional Narcotics Anonymous groups. He has earned associate degrees from a local technical college. He is a homeowner, an active volunteer in his community, a valued employee and a beloved husband to a United States citizen.

So why is Naz facing this crisis? Earlier in his life, Naz was the unfortunate victim of peer pressure and the irresponsibility of youth. Alcohol and recreational drugs became Naz's outlet from the troubles of life as an outsider in a "predominantly white" area, where Naz struggled to fit in. When Naz was caught and arrested, he was sentenced to six months of rehabilitation. Naz took the opportunity to put his life back together, and he soon began volunteering and working for the organization that had once helped him turn his life around. Years into his comeback, Naz met his wife (in 2009), and together they built the strong foundation for their future together.

Naz has long since been fully rehabilitated and has become a true asset to his community. If immigration officials would stop and listen to Naz's wife and Church, they would see the picture a man giving of himself to better his surroundings. They would see that Naz is an upstanding man who deserves to stay home with his family and his community. Stand in solidarity with Naz Mustakin and Tell D.H.S. to keep Naz in the U.S.

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