SAN ANTONIO – On the job here two weeks, Mexican Consul General Reyna Torres Mendivil arrives at her new post at a pivotal and distressing time for many of the Mexican nationals whom she serves in the U.S.
The most recent example is Senate Bill 4, which would allow law enforcement agencies to ask about anyone’s legal status.
Opponents call it the Texas version of Arizona’s “show me your papers” legislation. But supporters have said it’s a matter of public safety.
It triggered a sit-in Monday at Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s office, at which protestors urged him not to sign SB 4 when it reaches his desk as expected.
“That is something really sad,” said Torres. “It’s exactly a step in the wrong direction.”
Echoing San Antonio police Chief William McManus and others in law enforcement, the consul general said those here illegally will become more vulnerable targets because they won’t be willing to report a crime or testify.
A spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said, as an example, 17,833 people were deported last January, and 20,574 were deported in December.