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First Person: Mother And Son Fight For Environmental Justice

April 24, 2017 1:34 p.m.

First Person: Mother And Son Fight For Environmental Justice

GUEST:

Francisco Martinez, sophomore, San Diego State University

Related Story: First Person: Mother And Son Fight For Environmental Justice

Transcript:

This is a rush transcript created by a contractor for KPBS to improve accessibility for the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Please refer to the media file as the formal record of this interview. Opinions expressed by guests during interviews reflect the guest’s individual views and do not necessarily represent those of KPBS staff, members or its sponsors.

THIS IS KPBS MIDDAY EDITION . I AM MAUREEN CAVANAUGH . OLIVIA IS 28 AND A DREAMER PROTECTED FROM DEPORTATION UNDER THE DEFERRED ACTION FOR CHILDHOOD ARRIVALS OR DACA. PRESIDENT TRUMP'S RHETORIC HAS HER FEELING FOLDABLE WORK SO VULNERABLE THAT FOR THIS STORY SHE DOES NOT FEEL COMFORTABLE USING HER REAL NAME. OR THE NAMES OF PEOPLE IN HER FAMILY. AS REPORTER RYAN LEAVY TELLS US, SHE MAY HAVE ANOTHER WAY TO BECOME A U.S. CITIZEN.
Reporter: HOW IS IT GOING? ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS I SEE WHEN I WALK INTO OLIVIA'S HOME IS BERNIE, A GIANT SAME FOR NIGHT LURKING BETWEEN THE COUCH AND TV.
THIS IS BERNIE. [LAUGHTER] TOOK THE PLUSH DOG IS ONE OF MANY STUFFED ANIMALS THEY HAVE COLLECTED TOGETHER SINCE THEY MET EIGHT YEARS AGO. WORKING AT A SAN JOSE SOCCER STORE. THE BOTH PLAYED GROWING UP AND HAVE CLASSIC SOCCER PLAYER BUILDS. SHORT, LEAN AND ATHLETIC WORK JACOB PROPOSED LAST SPRING AND THEY STARTED PLANNING A WEDDING.
I WAS ON MY GOING TO HAVE THE WEDDING I HAD ALWAYS ENVISIONED. THEN NOVEMBER 8 HAPPENED I PANICKED.
I CAME HOME AND SHE IS NOT THERE. SHE IS PHYSICALLY HERE, BUT HER MIND IS GONE. SHE DOES NOT KNOW WHAT TO THINK OR DO. TOOK AFTER THE INITIAL SHOCK, THEY DITCHED THE WEDDING AND GOT MARRIED IN A SMALL CEREMONY IN DECEMBER. THEY WANTED TO DO IT BEFORE TRUMP WAS SWORN IN TO THEY COULD QUICKLY APPLY FOR OLIVIA'S GREEN CARD OR MARRIAGE. IS A U.S. CITIZEN. OLIVIA'S ACTUALLY LUCKY COMPARED TO OTHER DREAMERS PICK MOST PEOPLE IN HER SITUATION WOULD HAVE TO LEAVE THE COUNTRY FOR YEARS WILL TRY TO LEGALIZE THEIR STATUS THROUGH MARRIAGE. OLIVIA CAN PAY $1000 PENALTY AND PROCESS HER PAPERWORK HERE BECAUSE HER AND PUT HER ON A WAITING LIST FOR A GREEN CARD 20 YEARS AGO. EVEN SO, THE LAST FEW MONTHS HAVE BEEN A ROLLER COASTER OF FEAR AND UNCERTAINTY
THERE ARE NO WORDS TO DESCRIBE IT NOT KNOWING WHAT WILL HAPPEN IS THE WORST THING.
Reporter: SHOULD BE ABLE TO GET LEGAL STATUS THROUGH HER MARRIAGE AFTER ENTERING ILLEGALLY? WILL THE TRUMPET MINISTRATION CONSIDER HER A CRIMINAL? THE PRESIDENT HAS SENT OUT MIXED MESSAGES.
WE WILL DEAL WITH DACA WITH HEART.
WHICH MEANS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. [LAUGHTER] THERE IS NO WAY OF KNOWING WHAT HE IS PLANNING TO DO.
Reporter: OLIVIA SAYS SHE HAS BEEN SO ON EDGE SHE AVOIDS THE NEWS AND THROWS HERSELF INTO HER WORK AS A SPANISH TEACHER AT A FOR CISCO HIGH SCHOOL. AFTER THE ELECTION, SHE SIGNED UP TO HELP COACH THE GIRLS SOCCER TEAM. OLIVIA SETS UP A CONDITIONING DRILL DURING A SOCCER PRACTICE BEFORE ASKING THE GIRLS TO PICK A COUNTRY FOR A GAME CALLED WORLD CUP.
WHICH COUNTRY IS ON THE FINAL? THEY DO NOT WATCH WORLD CUP. TOOK COACHING AND BEING AROUND HER STUDENTS HAS HELPED OLIVIA FEEL CALMER AND LESS FEARFUL WHEN TRUMP TOOK OFFICE. AS WE GO SAID THE SCHOOL TO TALK TO SHE TELLS ME IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO BLOCK OUT THE NEWS. LIKE THAT A FELLOW DREAMER WAS PICKED UP ON THE TELEPHONE AND MEXICO BORDER AND DEPORTED. OR THAT ANOTHER GOT ARRESTED IN MISSISSIPPI AFTER SPEAKING OUT IN A PRESS CONFERENCE .
I SAW THE HEADLINES AND THOUGHT WHAT THE HECK IS THIS? WHAT IN THE WORLD? THERE IS NO PROTECTION FOR PEOPLE WITH DACA.
Reporter: IN THE MIDDLE OF ALL THIS UNCERTAINTY OLIVIA IS TRYING TO PLAN A BELATED WEDDING CELEBRATION. SHE AND JACOB CHECK OUT THE SOUND SYSTEM AT A SMALL CLUBHOUSE AND SEPARATE CISCO. -- IN SAN FRANCISCO. EVEN IF THE SALVATION GOES OFF PERFECTLY, JACOB AND OLIVIA WILL BE GRILLED ON THE MINUTE DETAILS OF THEIR RELATIONSHIP TO PROVE THEIR MARRIAGE IS LEGITIMATE.
WE LOVE EACH OTHER AND TAKE CARE OF EACH OTHER. WE HAVE BEEN THERE FOR EACH OTHER SINCE THE BEGINNING. TOOK LAST MONTH, OLIVIA GOT VETTED AND FINGERPRINTED THE MORE THAN 100 SECURITY CHECKS BY IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS. HER LAWYER IS CONFIDENT HER UNDECORATED STATUS WILL NOT BE ASSEMBLING BLOCK.
THAT IS RIGHT NOW. WE MAY GET OUR INTERVIEW AT THE END OF OCTOBER OR NOVEMBER. THAT IS A LONG TIME FROM NOW. A LOT OF THINGS CHANGE QUICKLY .
OLIVIA SAYS SHE WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO EXHALE UNTIL SHE IS A GREEN CARD IN HER HAND. IF THAT HAPPENS. I AM RYAN LEAVY.