Ten-year-old Rosa Maria Hernandez was first stopped and then followed by US Border Patrol agents while on her way to the hospital in an ambulance for emergency surgery, reports Leila Ettachfini. The immigration officers actually waited outside her room until she was discharged, and “she is now being held at a child housing facility in San Antonio, Texas against both her family’s will and doctor’s orders.”
Rosa suffers from cerebral palsy and was brought to America by her mother when she was just an infant. The two have lived as undocumented citizens in Laredo, Texas ever since.
“It’s stunning that federal agents would be waiting outside of a hospital room of a 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy,” said Representative Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) on a press call organized by the ACLU. “They’re treating her like a hardened convict.”
Border Patrol continues to hold Rosa in an Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) shelter against her parents’ will and the direct orders of her doctor, says Ettachfini.
“Rosa Hernandez is a post-operative patient with cerebral palsy and developmental delay. In the best interest of the patient, it is recommended that the patient be discharged to a family member that is familiar with her medical and psychological needs,” reads her discharge order.
Sadly, under the Trump administration’s crackdown on undocumented immigrants, Rosa’s case is not an exception: “similar treatment of undocumented people, regardless of age and health, is becoming more and more commonplace,” notes Ettachfini.