FOR IMMEDIATE RELASE
September 19, 2012
Jollene Levid, AF3IRM National Chairperson, firstname.lastname@example.org, 323-356-4748
Ivy Quicho, Mariposa Center Executive Director, email@example.com, 951-333-4306
Supporters Rally Together for Final Push Towards Asylum
LOS ANGELES– Grace Grande stood before a captivated audience Tuesday night and once again shared her story of fear and hope during the “Stand With Grace” Community Forum & Fundraiser. After more than five years of struggling to be free from her abuser and transborder stalker, Grande asserted, “I still choose to do the right thing […] I just want freedom and justice for my boys and me.”
Her future will be determined this Monday, September 24th, when Grande faces her final immigration court hearing for asylum. Grande and her children continue to be harassed and threatened by her abuser- a powerful, wealthy Philippine politician nearly double her age, in retaliation for her refusal to remain as his concubine. Grande seeks asylum for safety from him as well as future persecution and prosecution. If denied asylum, Grande will be deported back to the Philippines and will face retribution from a corrupt government official who has already threatened her life and the lives of her children.
The Association for Filipinas, Feminists Fighting Imperialism, Re-feudalization, and Marginalization (AF3IRM) and the Mariposa Center for Change have been working tirelessly to help Grande gain political asylum. The “Stand With Grace” campaign has brought together people from around the world. The widespread support reflects the global attention to the transnational aspects of the case- that forms of violence against women, such as stalking, know no borders, and that there is a dire need to strengthen and create policies that protect all women from violence, regardless of their immigration status. Thousands have decided to “Stand with Grace” – to not just fight back against abusers, but to also change the systems that empower and protect them. Grande’s abuser has manipulated US and other government agencies, including ICE, to force her back to the Philippines, and this has gone on for far too long.
Grande’s immigration court hearing on Monday is one of the last battlegrounds for the war being waged against her. AF3IRM and Mariposa Center urges everyone to literally stand with Grace at her trial to demand the freedom she deserves after years of abuse and fear. Join other supporters and fill the courtroom of Judge Rose Peters at 606 Olive Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014. Grande’s hearing is scheduled for 1:00pm.
STAND WITH GRACE POLITICAL ASYLUM HEARING
When: Monday, September 24
Address: 606 Olive Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014
Courtroom: Judge Rose Peters