Voces de la Frontera Reality Tour, July 2007
“I came to the United States in 2002. I tried twice to get my visa, but they denied it, so I came anyway. I only wanted to come to see my children and then return. But arriving here, because I am their mother, my sons didn’t want me to go. So I stayed for them. It wasn’t easy finding work but luckily one day I found a job.”
“One day around 10:00 a.m. I was working and suddenly I heard a lot of yelling. I didn’t understand what was happening because I did not speak English. An agent entered, pointed a gun at us and I was arrested and brought to jail.”
“Since I am a diabetic I felt sick and I started crying. I thought I’m not coming home today and my children are waiting for me. Something inside, the strength that I had, was weakened. When they were going to give me a uniform I threw up. Maybe that annoyed them because they did not give me anything to cover myself. They brought me to a dark, ugly room where there was no toilet, no food or water. I stayed there for three days. Then they brought me to another place where I stayed for 9 days until my children paid the bond.”
“I felt like I could have died that day. If I needed medical attention, no one would have cared if I had died. Only God helped me get through the pain. It is better that it happened to me than to one of my children.”
“That’s why I can’t stay quiet. I have to talk about everything that happened to me and that’s why I am here fighting, trying to change the laws. We are human beings like everyone and we are just looking for a way to survive.”
“We came to the country of opportunity and that’s all we want, an opportunity. At this stage in my life, I have been through a lot and I am tired. But there are many young people and we must triumph for them.”
Voces de la Frontera newspaper, July 2008
25 of us were arrested. Two years have gone by since that day. The majority of my co-workers have had to leave, and I don’t know what has happened to them. I have lived their pain, we have suffered together due to all this. I have felt how these families have been separated. I believe that is the saddest part, because the reason one comes to this country is for the wellbeing of your family, and to be united as a family.
I am still fighting. I will have my hearings with the judge and I don’t know what will happen to me. But so far for these two years, I am still here.
Sometimes it may seem like I have resigned myself, that I am prepared to leave, but no. I will never be prepared to be far away from my family. That is the reason for my struggle, and for that reason I need to be strong if that day comes, but I am fighting so that will never happen, so that there will be just laws that allow us to be here.
Today there is uncertainty, but good things are coming. I believe this because God would never allow a lot of time to go by with bad things. The days I have spent on the tour have been good. I have felt support from Voces and the people of Wisconsin and I will always have them in my heart.
This post is also available in: Spanish