Twenty-one people who worked for the Trump Organization while undocumented have asked to meet with President Donald Trump to address immigration policy reform and request deportation relief, the Washington Post reported.
The Post on Wednesday obtained a letter from former Trump Organization golf course groundskeepers, maids and kitchen staff — some who worked there for 10 years — asking the President to “do the right thing to find a home for us here in America so that we can step out of the shadows and not deport us and our friends and family.”
“We are modest people who represent the dreams of the 11 million undocumented men, women and children who live and work in this country,” the group wrote in the letter shared by the Post. “We love America and want to talk to you about helping to give us a chance to become legal.”
The signees said that they know the Trump family and that Trump knows many of them, adding that “we believe you have a heart.”
“You know we are hard workers and that we are not criminals or seeking a free ride in America,” the workers wrote to Trump. They stressed that they “simply want to find a place for ourselves to make America even better” and “need the opportunity to legalize our immigration status.”
The White House did not respond to a CNN request for comment.
The Trump Organization has previously come under fire for having hired undocumented workers. The Post reported in February that at least 18 undocumented workers from five golf courses in New York and New Jersey had been dismissed over the previous two months.
The company told CNN at the time that they fired employees who allegedly “provided falsified documents” and had since begun using E-verify, a system that confirms whether potential employees are in the country legally. Former employees have provided similar accounts of having provided paperwork and being asked to come to work almost immediately after, with managers allegedly helping to obtain phony documents in at least one case.
Undocumented workers from Trump’s organizations have been vocal in recent months, highlighting their ties to a President who has repeatedly disparaged Latinos and made hardline immigration policies the trademarks of his presidency. Workers met with members of Congress in January to ask for protection, and two of them attended the State of the Union in February as guests of Democratic lawmakers.
Jose Gabriel Juarez, who worked at the Trump National Golf Club Westchester for 10 years as a waiter, told the Post that he joined on to the letter to try to get Trump to acknowledge the service of multiple people living with uncertain immigration statuses.
Juarez told the Post that he tries to start each day with “happiness and faith, but you always think about the possibility of deportation.”
If Trump agrees to a meeting with the group, “I would say, ‘Thank you very much for having given me work for 10 years in one of the most beautiful golf clubs in Westchester, New York,’ ” Juarez added. “And I would ask him for the opportunity to be here legally in this country.”