Monday, September 29, 2008

Preying on Undocumented Women & Children

In my work on civil and human rights, especially with immigrant populations, I was contacted recently about a woman without documentation who worked at a fruit stand in the northeast. A male customer approached her and asked if she had any waitressing experience, as he needed servers at his restaurant. Seeing this as an opportunity to make a little more money to support herself and her family, the woman agreed to stop by the establishment for an interview. When she arrived, instead of sitting down and discussing a job opportunity, the woman was met by a group of men who took turns raping her. They then told her that if she went to the authorities, they would have her deported.

This isn't all that unheard of, I personally know someone who was put in a similar situation when they were an undocumented child. She was taken to the emergency room for her stab wounds and she luckily lived in a sanctuary city so her parents did not fear going to the police. The person who did that to her was brought to justice however not before he had time to rape another child.

But not every woman or child lives in a sanctuary city and even with the U-visa designed to help the victims of such crime it is left toothless because often local law enforcement refuses to cooperate with the issuing of U-visas.

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