RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The first lady of Honduras, Ana Garcia, traveled Monday to McAllen, Texas, United States, to learn about thousands of migrants from her country awaiting reunification, release, or deportation processes, reported the Presidential House in Tegucigalpa.
García, the wife of the Honduran president, Juan Orlando Hernández, traveled to McAllen with members of the Migrant Attention Task Force, and on Tuesday and Wednesday will hold an intense work agenda that includes visits to places of refuge and migratory zones or routes through which thousands of Hondurans have tried to reach the United States, adds the official information.
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The Consul of Honduras in Texas, Ana Bulnes, indicated that “the phenomenon of migration is not a new issue for Honduras and the United States; however, it is always intended to be carried out in an orderly, legal and safe manner, as it is a right of the people.”
She added that thousands of Hondurans are now in shelters or refuges, waiting for their family reunification process within the United States. That is why the First Lady and the Task Force are touring several places in McAllen.
The first lady will visit several Border Patrol stations in the Rio Grande Valley, as well as two shelters where many minors are waiting for their families to present the necessary documentation to be received in homes in the United States or returned to Honduras.
The consul said that the reunification process for each child has some established deadlines and takes between one and two months. Hence, the minors remain in the centers where they are attended in important areas such as health, food, shelter, shelter, even education.
In addition, according to Consul Bulnes, currently, in the entire U.S. immigration system, there are about 5,000 Honduran children awaiting reunification processes, and 65% of them are in shelters located within the jurisdiction of the consulate in McAllen.
The presence of the first lady and personnel of the Migrant Attention Task Force, “in addition to seeking a possible acceleration of the processes, generates hope in the children, because perhaps they are desperate to be reunited with their families,” said Bulnes.
The agenda of the Honduran president’s wife will include a visit to the Anzalduas Bridge, where the U.S. Border Patrol “has created a temporary facility to expedite the processing of some families that are considered to be released in the McAllen area, seeking to spend less time there and avoid going to a processing center.”
According to Bulnes, there are at least 500 families in that shelter, of which documentation needs to be verified to establish if they are, in fact, Hondurans and if indeed the children accompanying them are their children.