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Drama About Immigration Raids and their Human Consequences in Arizona Is No Fiction for Many

Dulce Juarez plays the role of a school counselor who has to decide whether she will help an immigrant family. (Photo: Charles Dee Rice/cdricephotography.com)

Dulce Juarez plays a school counselor who has to decide whether to help an immigrant family. (Photo: Charles Dee Rice/cdricephotography.com)

PHOENIX, Arizona — When the school counselor gave her the news, it broke Olivia’s heart. Her father had been detained by deputies from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office. In the worst case scenario, he might have already been deported.

Olivia is a fictional character in The Tears of Lives, a play produced by Phoenix’s New Carpa Theater Company and written by James Garcia. But stories like hers are common in Arizona.

The play — a fundraising effort to keep Phoenix’s sole day laborer center from shutting down — is holding up a mirror to audiences, challenging them to acknowledge the situation faced by immigrant families torn apart in raids by local sheriff’s deputies who are authorized to act as immigration agents.

“We wanted to expose audiences to stories they might never see — said Garcia — put a third dimension to the immigrant story. Because most Americans’ image of immigrants is of people coming over a (border) wall, or being handcuffed on a sidewalk.”

Watch a segment of the play/Video by Valeria Fernández

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