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This Immigration Rights Group Gave 6 Families The Chance To Cross The Border For A 3-Minute Visit

Border Angels / Facebook

Tears, hugs and so much loved spilled across the U.S.-Mexico border last weekend as families were reunited in Friendship Park in San Diego. For the third time, Border Angels teamed up with the U.S. Border Patrol for an “Opening the Door of Hope” event. For three minutes, family members got the chance to hold, touch and see each other for the first time in years. Emotions ran thick.


San Diego’s Friendship Park was the scene of love, family reunions and hope this past weekend.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

“Friendship Park is the heart and soul of this immigration issue,” Border Angels founder Enrique Morones told CNN. “We have the universal human right to be with our families. You don’t practice human rights by putting up a wall.”


Border Angels, a nonprofit organization trying to improve the conditions along the U.S.-Mexico border, teamed up with Border Patrol to organize the event for Mexico’s Children’s Day.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

Six families were screened and approved to cross the border in order to spend just a few brief moments soaking up all the love they could muster, according to Border Angels.


The six pre-approved families got the chance to cross the border to Mexico for 3-minute visits.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

“It was amazing to feel my mom and touch her again, smell her, everything,” Jannet Castanon told Times of San Diego after seeing her mother for the first time in nine years. “She’s still the same lady, strong.”


The emotions at the park were high for everyone, not just the families in attendance.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

The children were treated to a day of festivities on both sides of the border wall.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

There was face painting, treats and, after the family visits, the children were all given toys.


“The purpose is much more than letting a family reunite for three minutes,” U.S. Rep. Juan Vargas told the crowd, according to Times of San Diego.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

“The purpose is really to show that this is what we should be doing, bringing families together, not separating them,” Vargas continued.


Event officials hope that events like this can bring renewed interest in solving the contentious immigration debate.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

“When the wall was built, nobody expected all these deaths,” Morones told CNN Money about the wall, first constructed in 1994. “They thought that people would stop coming in 1994, but they didn’t. They started crossing in more dangerous areas. So instead of one to two people dying a month, it was one to two people dying per day.”


As the day came to a close, family members gave final hugs and so many tears were shed.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

“I don’t know where people get the cold hearts to say it’s OK to break families apart,” Vargas told the press. “These families are trying to live the American Dream, coming, working hard, building a life, building a country.”


“I hope that one day there is no border, and we can all see our family members once again,” attendee Gabi Esparza told CNN Money, no doubt echoing the thoughts and hopes of other family members at the event.

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Credit: Border Angels / Facebook

Border Angels will be having another event at the border for families for Mother’s Day.


READ: The Next Time Someone Says We Need A Border Wall, Show Them This

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This Is What Young Latino Voters Had To Say About Hillary Clinton's East L.A. Visit

politics

This Is What Young Latino Voters Had To Say About Hillary Clinton’s East L.A. Visit

On Cinco de Mayo, Hillary Clinton held a campaign rally in East Los Angeles. The event was clearly aimed at Latinos — East L.A. is one of the most Latino parts of Los Angeles County, and her 14-minute speech focused on immigration and attacking Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant stance. The event was not without controversy, as thousands of protestors held demonstrations outside the venue.

We spoke to young Latinos, both supporters and detractors, to find out why they came out for the event and to write down the issues they care most about. This is what they said.


“I want to support strong women, not oppose them.”

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Credit: Fidel Martinez/We Are Mitu

Name: Belinda Campos
Age: 30
Occupation: Project manager for a nonprofit public health group
Supports: Clinton
Cares About: Student loans and immigration reform

“I read her [2014] book “Hard Choices”and I was very inspired by her and everything she’s put up with. I come from a background of strong women, and I always recognize when I see one.

“I work in [the L.A. neighborhood of] Boyle Heights where a lot of the residents are immigrants, and I see the ways they suffer.” She added that Clinton’s plan for immigrations was the best option.


“I applied for DACA and would definitely love to hear what she plans to do about it.”

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Credit: Fidel Martinez/We Are Mitu

Name: Maybell Sanchez, undocumented
Age: 22
Occupation: Student-athlete at East Los Angeles College
Supports: Sanders
Cares About: Immigration

Although a fan of Senator Bernie Sanders, Sanchez attended the rally to listen to what the frontrunner has to say about immigration reform.

“I believe [Clinton] will let us stay here.”


“The choice is obvious. we either stand by someone who’s going to unite the country, or someone who’s going to divide it.”

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Credit: Fidel Martinez/We Are Mitu

Name: Richard Lopez
Age: 37
Occupation: bussiness professional
Supports: Clinton
Cares About: Stopping Trump, bringing the country together

“A Trump presidency would be the end of the United States as we know it. You might as well say, ‘We had a good run, thanks for coming, good night.'”

“A Hillary presidency would be a great thing. Her husband [former President Bill Clinton] has a legacy in this country of helping Latinos. He helped make homes more affordable and once she jumps into office she’ll be able to provide Latinos with the education we need.”


“We spend way too much money on war when we don’t have services here in the United States for workers.”

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Credit: Fidel Martinez/We Are Mitu

Name: Victor Quinteros
Age: N/A
Occupation: Organizer for the Act Now to Stop War & End Racism (ANSWER) coalition
Supports: Gloria LaRiva, candidate for the Party of Socialism and Liberation
Cares About: Palestine, worker’s rights, social progams, anti-war effort

“[Clinton] helped drive the war effort in Libya and she’s helped the escalation of the use of drones.”

“She has a track record of being against the working class.”


“The most important issue to me as a young Latina voter is equal pay for women.”

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Credit: Fidel Martinez/We Are Mitu

Name: Eva Mata
Age: 28
Occupation: SDirector of inside sales for a telecom company
Supports: Clinton
Cares About: Equal pay

“I work very hard, and I work in a company full of men. It’s in technology, and it’s a very male-driven environment, so I would love to see my salary matched to someone of my status.”


READ: Bill O’Reilly Won’t Give Up On The Republican Leader’s Border Wall Idea

Register to vote today by downloading the Latinos Vote app for iOS and Android. Our voice matters. #WeAreAmerica

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