•   
  •   
  •   

US Mexican program lets parents visit their children living illegally in US after decades apart

17:46  11 february  2018
17:46  11 february  2018 Source:   latimes.com

After the 'Trump effect' slowed illegal immigration, numbers rise again as Central Americans fear conditions at home

  After the 'Trump effect' slowed illegal immigration, numbers rise again as Central Americans fear conditions at home McALLEN, Texas - Illegal crossings along the U.S.-Mexico border, after declining in early 2017, began an unexpected upturn last spring that only recently receded, according to new government figures. The figures reflect the up-and-down nature of illegal immigration and are reminders that multiple factors - from politics to weather to conditions in home countries - influence who tries to come to the United States and when.Apprehensions on the southern border in October 2016, a month before Donald Trump's election, topped 66,000. After Trump's victory, the number of migrants trying to enter the U.S. illegally reached a 17-year low.

The round, wrinkled woman who stepped off the bus was not the mother Victor Castillo remembered leaving behind when he packed up his things 20 years ago and left their small Mexican town. In his memory she was still 56, strong and slim.

Some hadn't seen their children in three decades . Their visit was made possible by a program run by the government of the Mexican state of Michoacan that helps aging parents reunite with their children who have lived in the U . S . illegally for more than 10 years.

Tirza Valenzuela Esquivel, right, hugs her son, Everardo Valenzuela, whom she has not seen in more than 20 years, in Paramount, Calif., on January 25, 2018.© Maria Alejandra Cardona/Los Angeles Times/TNS/File Tirza Valenzuela Esquivel, right, hugs her son, Everardo Valenzuela, whom she has not seen in more than 20 years, in Paramount, Calif., on January 25, 2018.

LOS ANGELES — The round, wrinkled woman who stepped off the bus was not the mother Victor Castillo remembered leaving behind when he packed up his things 20 years ago and left their small Mexican town.

Loading...

Load Error

In his memory she was still 56, strong and slim. Now at 76, Albertina Garcia Ruiz had a fuller belly, a bad knee and wore her curly hair cropped short. Castillo took his mother by the arm and led her to meet her grandchildren.

Trump budget to include $3 billion for border wall - official

  Trump budget to include $3 billion for border wall - official President Donald Trump's budget proposal to be unveiled on Monday will include a request for $3 billion as a down payment on building a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico, a senior administration official said on Thursday. The official, who briefed a small group of reporters on condition of anonymity, said the money would go toward purchasing private land in the Rio Grande Valley in south Texas and advance purchases of steel.The administration hopes to build 60 miles (96 km) of new steel bollard fencing along the border with 2018 funding and an additional 64 miles (103 km) with 2019 funding.

A program run by state governments in Mexico helps elderly parents reunite with their children who have lived in the U . S . illegally for more than 10 years. →.

Mexican program lets parents visit their children living illegally in U . S . after decades apart . Migrant advocates say U . S . is separating parents from children to discourage illegal immigration and asylum requests.

"I love you," he told her. "I'm so glad you're here with us."

In late January, 48 such mothers and fathers from the town of Nueva Italia arrived in Los Angeles. Some hadn't seen their children in three decades.

Their visit was made possible by a program run by the government of the Mexican state of Michoacan that helps aging parents reunite with their children who have lived in the U.S. illegally for more than 10 years.

Castillo, 47, and his wife immigrated to California from Nueva Italia in 1998 to work and start a family. He now runs a landscaping business in Orange County.

His three children — two boys ages 19 and 14, and a 2-year-old girl — knew their grandmother only through photos and phone calls. As he and his mother walked up to the rest of the family, Garcia Ruiz let go of her son's arm to place a kiss on the cheek of each grandchild.

Man in US illegally guilty of killing 2 California deputies

  Man in US illegally guilty of killing 2 California deputies A man in the United States illegally was convicted Friday of killing two Northern California deputies in a case that helped fuel the national immigration debate.Luis Bracamontes was found guilty of shooting Sacramento County sheriff's Deputy Danny Oliver in 2014, then killing Placer County sheriff's Detective Michael Davis Jr. hours later."Yay," he said softly after first verdict read, looking at the victims' families and jurors with slight smile."I'm going to kill more cops soon," Bracamontes said as he was led away.

Almost 500 children in Argentina had their identities erased in the 1970s, after their parents were murdered and they were stolen to be brought up in families with loyal ideology. For decades , she and other members of the organization have aimed to find children who were stolen and illegally adopted.

Immigration measure has split husbands from wives, children from parents . To complete their application process, people who entered the United States illegally must go to their final interview at a U . S She visited Jorge on occasion, and in 2010 Anita tried to live in Mexico again with the twins.

"I can hardly believe it," Castillo said. "Twenty years. Can you imagine?"

The program, called Palomas Mensajeras, which means "carrier pigeons," helps Mexican parents older than 60 apply for a passport and a tourist visa. Gilberto Cobian Cervantes, director of migrant affairs for the Mugica municipality in Michoacan, said the process can be long and complicated, especially for older people from rural towns.

Other Mexican states, including Zacatecas, Puebla and Hidalgo, operate similar programs. Cobian Cervantes said the Michoacan program started last year and has since reunited more than 1,000 parents with their children in California. Different groups have gone to Illinois and other states.

Another group of 27 parents from Nueva Italia landed at San Jose International Airport on Friday.

Some parents have refused to sign up, thinking the program is a scam. Several people from the Los Angeles group said only one of their parents had gone through with it because the other was too skeptical.

GOP senators to introduce immigration plan mirroring Trump framework

  GOP senators to introduce immigration plan mirroring Trump framework A group of GOP senators are preparing to introduce an immigration plan that lines up with President Trump's framework as the Senate barrels toward a heated debate over the issue.Seven GOP senators, led by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), will file the bill, known as the Secure and Succeed Act, on Monday.

• Children and their parents live in constant fear of separation. In this report we focus specifically on children in Mexican immigrant households, as enforcement policies disproportionately affect them.

Living together, learning apart . Is desegregation dead? The two schools’ tables demonstrate an alarming fact about the district as a whole: Now that parents have more say in their children ’s education than they have in decades , San Francisco’s public schools are increasingly

The January reunion was emotional. More than 100 family members crowded near Spane Park in Paramount as they waited for a bus to arrive with their parents from Los Angeles International Airport.

The families carried balloons, bouquets of roses and handmade welcome signs. As the sun set nearing 5 p.m., they grew anxious with anticipation.

When the bus pulled in, the crowd erupted in cheers. "They're here!" one woman screamed as she rushed toward the bus. As if watching celebrities on a red carpet, family members pulled out cellphones to record the seniors stepping off the bus.

The last time Maria Luisa Garcia saw her mother, she was 21, newly married and about to move to the U.S. with her husband. As they said goodbye, her mother, Maria Elvira Espinoza, told Garcia not to go.

In the 17 years since, Garcia's biggest wish has been to bring her mom for a visit or be able to visit her. But, being in the country illegally, the latter option was always out of the question for her.

Garcia, now 38 and living east of Los Angeles, missed her mom's cooking — especially ribs in salsa negra — her advice and even her scoldings.

Cruz only senator to vote against moving to immigration debate

  Cruz only senator to vote against moving to immigration debate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) was the only senator to oppose moving toward an immigration fight on the Senate floor. Senators voted 97-1 on ending debate over whether or not to take up the House-passed bill being used as a vehicle for the Senate's debate.

As undocumented immigrant parents of US -born children await a Supreme Court decision that could shape their future, some deportees are trying to offer emotional A decade is the typical punishment for entering the country illegally , which the Mexico native had done more than five years earlier.

The Trump administration said this week it’s prosecuting every immigrant caught entering the US illegally , a policy that will likely result in the separation of children from their parents while their legal cases unfurl. Critics have denounced it as a particularly cruel and mean-spirited tactic.

"Even as an adult, you always need your mother," she said, carrying a large bouquet of roses, lilies and carnations.

The trip would be a time for old memories and new. Their plans for the three weeks included Las Vegas, Disneyland and the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Garcia looked forward to eating her mother's arroz con leche the next morning for breakfast. That night, she would introduce her to Vietnamese cuisine.

Espinoza, 63, was one of the last people off the bus. Garcia rushed to her, and the women embraced and cried.

Later, Garcia recorded the mariachi performance on Facebook Live. After a few minutes, she flipped the camera around, wrapped an arm around her mom and smiled widely: their first selfie.

Sergio Huerta, 44, spent days preparing for his mother's visit.

Though she would be staying just three weeks, he fixed up a spare bedroom in his San Bernardino County home and bought everything she'd need to move in: a bed, toothbrush, hairbrush, perfume, shirts, sweaters and jackets.

In the days leading to their reunion, nerves kept him from sleeping. His wife and three children — all U.S. citizens — had visited his mother, Maria Delgado Renteria, in Mexico a couple of months previously.

Huerta, 44, talks to his parents twice every day but hadn't seen them in 21 years, since just before he boarded a plan to Tijuana and crossed into California. His brother Alonso Huerta, 42, hadn't seen them in 23 years.

The Latest: Senate votes to begin immigration debate

  The Latest: Senate votes to begin immigration debate The Senate has voted to start debating immigration, including whether to protect hundreds of thousands of young immigrants in the U.S. illegally.6:08 p.m.

Those children are now living in detention centers along the US - Mexico border. Between mid-April and the end of May, almost 2,000 children were separated from their parents after crossing over US - Mexico border.

Within this context, many children report that their parents who had planned to return to El Salvador after paying for their education now fear We begin by collecting basic demographic information like age, gender and with whom the child lives (including age and relationship of each person in the home).

Sergio stayed busy planning the reception. He organized a youth mariachi band to perform and arrived hours early to set up the food and drinks at the park.

The reunion brought mother and sons to tears.

"I thought I would never see her again," Sergio said. "It's like I fulfilled a dream. Now I can sleep soundly."

Sergio's father was one of the people who had refused to sign up, thinking the program was a fraud. Now he plans to visit his sons later this year.

Not everyone fared as well.

Yuri Vences was ecstatic when she found out there way a way to reunite with her mother, Josefina Baez, whom she hadn't seen in 18 years.

Baez, 62, had completed the paperwork, gotten a passport and was seven days away from her visa appointment with the U.S. consulate in late December when she died of a heart attack.

Vences was devastated. Her father died 10 years ago. Her three children would never get to meet their grandparents.

"I can't tell you how painful it was to have such a wonderful opportunity and then have it slip from my hands," she said. "I thought we would finally do so many things that we weren't able to all those years."

For Vences, the loss was immeasurable. She had left home at 15 to reunite with the father of her 5-month-old baby boy, who had migrated to California for work.

She remembers her mother telling her not to go. Vences assured her that they would return after two years. But she stayed on, hoping to give her children a better life with more opportunities.

Vences always dreamed of bringing her parents for a visit. But applying for a tourist visa required proof of significant income from both her and her parents to show that her parents had reason to return to Mexico and that she could cover their costs while they were in the U.S. She thought they'd never qualify.

Now, Vences said she feels the pain of so many other immigrants. Her dream of someday returning to her hometown feels pointless without her parents there to welcome her back.

"Life no longer has meaning," she said. "I missed the opportunity to enjoy it."

Senators say they are close to a bipartisan immigration plan .
As the White House pushed a 500-page immigration bill as the only option in Congress to help "Dreamers," a bipartisan coalition of senators appeared close Wednesday to agreeing on an alternative proposal that may draw broader support. Top Republicans back the administration approach from Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, chairman of the Judiciary Committee. That measure protects 1.8 million Dreamers from deportation in exchange for massive long-term cuts in legal immigration of family members of immigrants.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!