Change To Immigration Process May Help Families 1/3/13
CBS 7 News
January 3, 2013
It’s a risk many undocumented immigrants face:
Return home, leave their family stateside and hope to gain legal status.
So instead of spending months or even years abroad awaiting an immigration visa, a person may only face a few weeks outside the U.S.
This new rule is only available if undocumented immigrants can prove their family would suffer “extreme hardship” in their absence.
But Paul Brooks, Education Program Director at Casa de Amigos, said the policy still does not solve the issue of family separation, and just lessens the time.
“They still have to go back to their country,” said Brooks. “And some of those countries, are Nicaragua and Guatemala, and they are not close.”
Here at Casa de Amigos, some families members need help obtaining their visa.
Hector Hernandez is an immigration specialist that travels from Lubbock, sometimes once a week to Midland, all to help families at the program finally unite.
“Clients that I typically see, about half of them have family in Mexico that have not been able to make it over here,” said Hernandez. “It’s a big problem in our community.”
Art Leal, the founder of Una Voz Unida, said the road to a legal status may be less burdensome, but more needs to be done.
“This is a good step, but not a fix all,” said Leal. “The country still needs to have comprehensive immigration reform.”
The new process begins March 4, 2013.
For more information on Casa de Amigos or immigration assistance, call: 682-9701.