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The United States grants citizenship to all
children born on U.S. soil, yet Texas has made it increasingly difficult for
immigrant parents to attain legal documentation for their babies.
the civil rights lawsuit filed in May, four women who requested birth
certificates for their children in Cameron and Hidalgo counties were turned
away because they did not have proper identification.
According to officials, the Texas Department
of State Health Services Vital Statistics Unit no longers accepts photo IDs issued by the
Mexican Consulate to Mexican nationals living in the United States. Moms without a
current U.S. visa are also banned from receiving birth certificates for their
are targeting the undocumented population, but immigration is a federal
function and not the job of the Department of State Health Services," said Jennifer
Harbury, a lawyer with Texas RioGrande
Harbury is representing the four women in the lawsuit against
the Texas Department of State Health Services which alleges constitutional
discrimination and interference in the federal government's authority over
Moms without birth certificates for their
children will face hardship when attempting to enroll them in schools or
receive medical care.
Since filing the lawsuit in May, Harbury said
that she has received a flood of calls from other women who have been denied
proof of citizenship for their children and want to join the suit.
a woman going to prove she's the child's parent without a birth certificate?"