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Senegalese Mother of Three Spared Detention at ICE Check-In


June 12, 2017​


Michelle Nealy, mnealy@faithinpubliclife.org, (202)735-7123

Amanda Hoyt, ahoyt@faithinpubliclife.org, (614)483-3168

Senegalese Mother of Three Spared Detention at ICE Check-In

Accompanied by Faith and Community Leaders​

Columbus, Ohio – On Monday, June 12th, Bijou Sene, a Senegalese mother of three, had a scheduled appointment with agents at the Columbus office of Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) for an official check-in. She was accompanied by faith and community leaders.​

ICE released Sene after her appointment, granting her at least one more month of freedom. She has been ordered to appear at the Cincinnati ICE office next month.  

Sene fled ongoing persecution in Senegal and has lived in Cincinnati for more than 12 years with her American-born children. She is also an active member of the Clifton Mosque.

Horsed Noah, Abubakar Assidiq Islamic Center, Columbus, OH:

“We are very happy that all these people united by love and fueled by faith came here today to show support for their sister, Bijou. We prayed with her in the lobby and waited for her. It’s good to see now she has at least one more day to spend with her children. People of faith will continue to stand up for our neighbors. We will continue to act on what our Scriptures have commanded us, to put our faith into action.”​

Pastor Alan Dicken, Carthage Christian Church, Cincinnati, OH:

“Brave and courageous people took a stand for what is right, what is just and what is loving which is why we were able to claim victory today. We are especially thankful and grateful for Bijou and her family and we hope to celebrate with her.”

Rev. John Wallace, Church of the Saviour, Westerville, OH:

“We want Bijou and her kids to be safe and live and thrive. We want to build community. We say we’re for families and for children, so we need to stand up for them. They had situations they needed to leave and we want them to find life here. The United States has been known for that. Most of us claim to be religious and we’re told to love our neighbors as ourselves. This is one of the clearest ways to carry that out. She’s our neighbor. She needs life. And we need to stand with her.”

Deacon Nick Bates, Hunger Network in Ohio, Columbus, OH:

“We are stronger together as a country when we have more diversity. God has created such diversity and we need to embrace it. The fact that we have policies that would remove people like Bijou from our communities is devastating. It hurts.”​

Faith in Public Life is a national movement of clergy and faith leaders united in the prophetic pursuit of justice, equality and the common good. Together, we are leading the fight to advance just policies at the state and federal level. Our network of 50,000 leaders engage in bold moral action that affirms our values and the human dignity of all.

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