Mexican consulates expand services to ease anxiety after Trump's election
Posted November 29, 2016
Raleigh, N.C. — Anxiety among Latino immigrants continues to increase following the election of Donald Trump as the next U.S. president, and the Mexican government is stepping up assistance to them through additional community meetings, easier access to immigration applications and paperwork and a new 24-hour hotline.
"I think it's important that the people know they have rights that they are protected under the U.S. Constitution and the regulations of North and south Carolina," Remedios Gomez Arnau, consul general for the Mexican consulate in Raleigh, said Tuesday.
Gomez Arnau said the number of immigrants coming to the consulate for help has dramatically increased since the presidential election. The new hotline, Estamos Contigo, will provide assistance to immigrants who are being abused, who have questions or who are worried for their families and their futures, she said.
Elizabeth Orocio, her husband, Jamie de la Cruz, and their son visited the consulate Tuesday to explore moving to Canada, where they can live legally.
"It's an opportunity because, that way, we both can be legal over there and we're maybe not going to feel afraid like the way it feels over here," Orocio said.
De la Cruz owns a construction company, has 30 employees and subcontracts across the Triangle, but the couple say they are nervous about Trump's vow to deport the millions of people in the U.S. illegally.
"We heard about a lot of stuff, what he's saying, the promises," Orocio said. "I guess because it's politics things, they promise a lot of stuff, and sometimes they do and sometimes they don't come true."
Also, the attitude in the Triangle has shifted recently, she said, noting her son, who was born in the U.S., is now being been taunted in school. The couple declined to say how old the boy is or where he goes to school.
"They started telling him, 'Your dad and your mom, they're Mexicans,'" she said. "We both feel so nervous, especially because how do people act and what do they say."
Gomez Arnau said the uncertainty and fear among immigrants also makes them vulnerable to scams, and she warned them to be wary.