No paper, no job, no future . . .

Extended Interview

Harrisonburg, VA – Woodroof: What made you want to leave Guatemala?

Well, I come from very poor, poor family. And we don't have opportunities for job over there. We don't have a good education. I have a lot of brothers over there and my mom. I give my sacrifice for them, you know. I am working for my family.

Woodroof: You came here. How long did it take you to find a job, get settled in this house. You know, to get your life organized?

Well, I don't have a job for four months. I was looking for a job, but don't found it because I don't have paper. And after that I pay for paper and work with other name. That is what the police and immigration say is illegal and bad for migrant come to United States. I understand that. But we don't have other option.

Woodroof: What job did you finally get and how long have you been working.

I worked in Cargill. I work with other paper. . .

Woodroof: You mean you had forged papers to get the job?

Yes. I use false paper. I use for three years. After that, immigration come in and now I am scared because my situation is like Cargill come and check papers. Now I don't know what is my doing.

Woodroof: Were you able on what you made at Cargill to send some money back to your family in Guatemala?

Yes. I think I sent all money. I don't have nothing.

Woodroof: You said you recognize that it would be good to have papers, but there are many people just like you who don't have papers who are here and who are working. Have you thought about what you would like to see this country do to respond to that situation?

I think it is very hard, because the government only see the bad people and they have eyes only for something bad. These people come into the United States and that is our country and we don't need more people, but why don't they take a little time, take seat, and think a little bit. This is true: A lot of American people have children. But how they feel one night or two night when don't have food and going to the bed crying, say, Daddy, where is the food? I'm hungry. That is our situation. We don't come here to the United States to take money from the other people. We come here for work.

Woodroof: Thank-you.