02/11/2015 11:59 EST | Updated 04/13/2015 05:59 EDT

Alvarez-Rivera family, deported in 2013, returns to Montreal

A family of five deported to El Salvador in 2013 after losing a long fight to stay in Canada as refugees has returned to Montreal.

The Alvarez-Rivera family arrived in the city Tuesday evening after friends and supporters helped them secure permanent resident status.

Elsie Elizabeth and Raphael, along with their three children Alejandra, Rebeca and Veronica, settled into Laval after arriving in Canada in 2009, claiming they were escaping extortion by local street gangs.

The parents and oldest daughter found jobs here, and the two younger girls settled into high school.

RosaneDoré-Lefebvre, a Quebec New Democratic Party MP for the district of Alfred-Pellan, as well as a group of high school students who were friends with the couple's children, helped the family obtain permanent resident status.

The family had argued they would face danger and uncertainty if they returned to their native country.

But their refugee claim was rejected, and all subsequent appeals failed.