onexión Del Rio/ Monica Diaz, contributor

DEL RIO – The Mexican Consulate of Del Rio, Texas-- Carlos Obrador Garrido Cuesta, met with the Mayor of Sonora, Texas, Wanda Shurley, Sutton County Judge, Steve Smith, Sheriff, Oscar Chavez, City Manager, Ed Carrasco, Chief of Police, Art Fuentes, County Treasure, Maura Weingart and other community members of Sonora to discuss their services on March 5, 2017. 

During the meeting with City and County officials, Consul Carlos Obrador Garrido Cuesta provided information regarding the Mexicans in the United States, the importance of their contributions; highlighting that Mexico is crucial to the US economy. Mexico is the second destination for US exports, with 15.7% of the total amount, only after Canada (18.6%). Additionally, US exports to Mexico are larger than US exports to China and Japan combined.

Furthermore, Mexican immigrants are entrepreneurs who create jobs in the United States; 40 % of Fortune 500 companies were founded by first and second-generation immigrants. These companies create 10 million US jobs. As a consequence, around 570,000 companies in the United States, more than 1 for every 25, are owned by Mexican immigrants and generate $17 billion annually.

The services that most people identify with the consulate is that they issue Mexican identification cards, which are used by people who are not eligible for a state identification card. Also, they issue Mexican passports, officially stamp and notarize legal documents to be used in Mexico. And they distribute information on the protection of Mexicans in the United States. 

Left-to-right: Chief of Police – Art Fuentes, City Manager- Ed Carrasco, Judge – Steve Smith, Mayor – Wanda Shurley, Consulado De Mexico – Carlos Obrador Garrido Cuesta (Consul Titular), Treasurer – Maura Weingart, Sheriff – Oscar Chavez and Deputy – Duwayne Castro.

But our community isn’t aware of all of the services that the Consulate, as a hidden jewel provides for our region and for our families that we serve. The Consulate offers assistance and information on health services in our area as well. 

One of those “hidden” services that they provide are scholarships to Angelo State University, Sul Ross and Southwest Texas Junior College in Del Rio, TX. They have also helped our DACA students in our region with the reapplication process fees. 

When we meet with our families, our advice to them is to always contact the Mexican Consulate office if they have American-born children so that they can register them for their Mexican citizenship. This will help the families if they are deported and if they want their children to join them. The children will then be able to go to school and get healthcare services while in Mexico and the importance of obtaining their dual citizenship. 

A service that is always a shock to our communities is the protection and rights that our undocumented families face. Our undocumented population are fearful of getting deported if they report an abuse that is being done by a spouse, family member, or an employer. But they told our local protection agencies that if a person that is undocumented files an abuse report, they will get a residency card and will be protected from deportation by the Consulate office. 

The consulate comes to San Angelo, TX one Saturday each month to provide services to families that cannot travel to Del Rio. The Consulate will be at the public library in San Angelo on March 17th. 

For more information on their services, you can follow them on twitter @ConsulMexDelRio and on Facebook.