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OT: INS worker "a hero"

OT: INS worker "a hero"

Old Jul 15th 2002, 10:37 am
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Default OT: INS worker "a hero"

And this from "DePortland"!

From http://oregonlive.com/news/oregonian...7824208001.xml

(Excerpted)

When Dalisha's story was told in this column 10 days ago, the young woman was facing a big problem: Her championship rugby team was going to New Zealand without her. Dalisha had been stopped by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service at the U.S./Canada border in late April, and Dalisha learned the U.S. government did not consider her a U.S. citizen.

She was born in Canada, when Suzette -- a U.S. citizen -- was a 15-year-old runaway using an alias. Dalisha's birth certificate was Canadian, but all the names on it were fictitious. In April and throughout May, the INS said Dalisha was not American because R1 of an obscure loophole: her 15-year-old mother had not spent 16 years in the U.S. before Dalisha was born in Canada. Dalisha was told she had been living in the U.S. illegally since she was a few months old. If she went to New Zealand with her rugby team, she would not be allowed back in the U.S.

After he read Dalisha's story, Ed Sale of the Portland INS office took up her cause. In the end, another obscure INS regulation was discovered that saved the day: Dalisha was the child of an unwed mother who had lived in the U.S. at least a year before Dalisha's birth.

It wasn't an easy fix, though. In an effort to prove Suzette had lived in the U.S. before she gave birth, her mother called the Shoreline School District, which had bad news: The records for students in the class of 1983 had been purged accidentally from district computers years ago. Suzette, however, was able to get medical records proving she had been to doctors' offices in the years before Dalisha was born.

With the documentation in order, last week the INS expedited approval of Dalisha's permanent resident status and then her citizenship. Last Friday at 2 p.m. she took the oath of citizenship in Seattle and officially became an American.

There are several heroes in this piece. Ed Sale recognized Dalisha's predicament and went to bat for her. Sandy Moening spent days at the INS office in Seattle, dug up paperwork, and shuttled Dalisha all over the Seattle area to expedite arrangements.

<snip>

Thanks to the efforts of Ed Sale and others in the Portland and Seattle offices of the INS, Dalisha takes off soon for New Zealand. Then, Sandy will take the resort vacation she had planned to comfort Dalisha. "It's already paid for," Sandy says with a laugh. Besides, Sandy could use a vacation. "I have cried so many tears these last few weeks. Of happiness, sadness, and finally joy."

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