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article imageTexas ruling denies immigrant children birth certificates

By Karen Graham     Oct 18, 2015 in Politics
San Antonio - A Texas judge has ruled that the matricula consular, or I.D. card issued by Mexican Consulates cannot be used as a form of identification in getting a birth certificate for U.S.-born children.
The whole issue surrounding the denial of birth certificates in Texas centers around two things. One is the 14th Amendment to the Constitution that says children born in the U.S. are entitled by law to U.S. citizenship regardless of the immigration status of their parents.
The other issue is a move by the Texas Department of State Health Services that started in 2013 to deny birth certificates to children born to undocumented migrants. The denial of a birth certificate presents all kinds of problems today, from denial of medical services to being unable to enroll in school, and more.
Texas officials have continued to argue that the Mexican Consular I.D.s are easy to fake, and it's an argument that the Federal Bureau of Investigation agrees with, even though the I.D.s are accepted in dozens of states, and at most banks.
In his ruling on Friday, Judge Robert L. Pitman of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas in San Antonio, wrote, “While the Court is very troubled at the prospect of Texas-born children, and their parents, being denied issuance of a birth certificate, Texas has a clear interest in protecting access to that document.”
The lawsuit that started it all
In July of this year, NPR.org covered the story of the group of mothers who filed suit against the head of the Texas Department of State Health Services Vital Statistics Unit, claiming it has refused to give their U.S.-born children birth certificates.
The mothers also said, according to the complaint, that Texas was refusing most forms of ID that undocumented immigrants would have access to, such as the matricula cards or a foreign passport unless it bears a current U.S. visa.
The judge's ruling leaves children born on U.S. soil to illegal immigrants in a huge crack created by the Texas legal system, and it is growing larger by the day. In Texas, without a birth certificate, these mothers can't even prove their child is legally theirs, and if the state of Texas doesn't recognize this, then who do these children belong to?
According to the LA Times, Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton had nothing but praise for the ruling on Friday, saying in a statement: “Before issuing any official documents, it’s important for the state to have a way to accurately verify people are who they say they are through reliable identification mechanisms."
More about Birth certificates, matricula consular cards, Illegal immigrants, texas judge, ID cards
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