An Irish school is campaigning to save 9 year old Eric Zhi Ying Xue from getting deported to China. Xue was born in Ireland but is not a citizen. His mother Leena Mei Mei Xue has lived in Ireland for 12 years but has not been able to stabilize her residency situation and was served a deportation order back in 2015. Xue’s school, St Cronan’s School in Bray is working hard in raising this issue and states that Xue and his mother getting deported is “imminent”.
The school has organised an online petition and has been overwhelmed by the support. Thus far, over 40,000 people have signed the petition. This in my opinion is really sad if it happens, because Xue knows nothing about China and to him Ireland is his home and the only country he knows. Here is more from RTE:
Principal of St Cronan’s, Maeve Tierney, said that the school believed that Eric should be afforded the same rights as an Irish citizen.
Ms Tierney described Eric as “an extremely able boy”.
“He has never left this country. His entire network of friends is here,” she said.
Ms Tierney said the school believed that this was a moral issue and that it would be wrong to “pluck” Eric out of his community.
Eric’s teacher Niamh Corkery said that his classmates were upset and frightened by the news that he may be forced to leave the country.
Ms Corkery said she had explained what was happening to fourth class pupils this morning, but that they found it difficult to understand why Eric would be deported.
The school says it has been aware of the family’s situation for two years and had been working privately during this time to support Eric.
The school added that if Eric is forced to go to China, he will have no access to China’s health or education system, because he was not born in China.
St Cronan’s has appealed to Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan to revoke the deportation order made against Eric and his mother.
Meanwhile, a group of 295 Chinese parents in Ireland have also appealed to Minister Flanagan to revoke the deportation order.
They issued a statement saying that it is their belief that the Chinese education system is so different to the Irish one that it would be difficult for Eric to adjust to it.
In the statement, the group said: “Eric’s community is here in Ireland, he has a loving community who’s willing to fight for him to stay”.
I am hoping that Xue and his mother won’t be deported to China. Xue is only 9, born in Ireland, and that is his world. If he gets deported to China it will be devastating for him as he has no social and substantial support networks there. Let’s hope that him and his mother is able to remain in Ireland. Please sign the petition if you can.
Image via RTE
To read the original article, please click on: Harris ‘assisting’ Bray school to halt pupil’s deportation