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October 15, 2015

Aguilar Highlights Local Immigration Stories During Hispanic Heritage Month

As Hispanic Heritage Month draws to a close, Rep. Pete Aguilar (CA-31) continued his conversations with Inland Empire families caught in the immigration crisis. Throughout the month, Rep. Aguilar spoke with a number of families throughout San Bernardino County that have been personally involved with the immigration process. This week he spoke with Francisco Sandoval of Highland. Francisco and his wife Bertha became United States citizens when President Ronald Reagan signed the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 into law.

“Francisco’s experience reminds us that immigration reform shouldn’t be a partisan matter—his story should be an example to my colleagues in Congress about what both Republicans and Democrats can accomplish on this issue,” said Rep. Aguilar. He added, “I was also struck by Francisco’s honesty—his frustration with not just how badly the system needs to be improved, but with how desperately we as a people need to stop stigmatizing immigrants for wanting the same thing our ancestors sought: a better life.” 

“I’m proud to be an American—I love this country. To me, what’s most upsetting is how we treat each other and how people see immigration as a ‘Latino’ problem,” said Mr. Sandoval. He added, “It saddens me to see how people look at each other and treat them differently based on assumptions of where they come from. It’s not fair—this country belongs to us all.”

Rep. Aguilar’s conversation with Mr. Sandoval was the fourth discussion in a series of talks facilitated by the Coalition for Humane Immigration Rights for Los Angeles (CHIRLA), enabling Inland Empire residents affected by the immigration crisis to communicate directly with Rep. Aguilar. Throughout Hispanic Heritage Month, Rep. Aguilar has spoken with families throughout San Bernardino County to highlight the need for comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship.