Help a beautiful family stay together, keep their mother who is profoundly deaf in the United States. She needs her permanent resident card to work legally, support her family and become a productive citizen of the United States. When Martha was brought to the United States from Mexico, she could not read nor write, or speak, had limited communication skills and did not fully understand for many years what her immigration status was and how it will affect her future and the future of her family and children. Let us make this happen for this very, very deserving family.
Immigration lawyers are expensive, the family and extended family has already spent thousands on lawyers and immigration fees to government and need to compete the final applications that includes travel to Mexico. Martha needs to return to Juarez, Mexico to complete her immigration interviews for a Provisional Waiver (similar to a pardon) . Martha needs money for herself and an additional person to travel with her to Juarez for safety, sign language interpreter, Spanish interpreter, visa application costs, hotel, food, medical exams, and travel from North Carolina to Juarez for two (2) persons. $5,000 barely will cover those costs. We anticipate the total stay to be no less than two (2) weeks.
Martha’s Story by a Supporter
Below is one of many letters of support for Martha Gomez Hernandez.
(This was written by Martha’s former principal of the North Carolina School of the Deaf, NCDS).” As a student with a hearing loss, she had limited opportunities for education previously. Martha enrolled in the school as a high school student and she was eager to learn American Sign Language to be able to communicate with her peers and staff. Martha participated fully in school activities to help her learn American Deaf culture. Martha’s positive attitude and intelligence quickly propelled her to become first in her class. At graduation, Martha gave one of the most inspiring and moving valedictorian speeches I have ever heard. There was not a dry eye in the auditorium.
Through her participation in sports, Martha met her husband Matthew who was a student at the Eastern School for the Deaf in Wilson, NC. After graduation, Martha and Matthew were married and are now the parents of two beautiful hearing boys, Austin and Alex. They are excellent parents. As far as I know, Martha and Matthew have never been a financial burden to the state. Martha is a stay at home mom and devotes herself to making sure her children acquire typical language skills in spoken English to ensure academic success in school. Her children are bilingual, not Spanish, and English but American Sign Language and English. Martha is a loving mother who is always teaching her children. She and Matthew make sure that the children have typical experience to help with their language development. As the primary caregiver to her children, Martha’s absence in the home would be devastating to her children. It would negatively impact their success as young children entering school. Obviously, the emotional toil would be long term and be detrimental to the quality of life they currently provide as parents.
As adults with significant hearing loss, Martha and Matthew have to work harder at making sure that their children are raised with the necessary supports and experience to be successful adults. In the United States, Martha and Matthew have family members who are able to serve as spoken English language models for their children. As adults with a profound hearing loss, Matthew and Martha use American Sign Language as their primary mode of communication. If they were required to move back to Mexico to stay together as a family, Matthew and Martha would be unemployable. This would destroy their family.
Martha has many praiseworthy characteristics. She is friendly, trustworthy, hardworking, smart, and would be an asset to our country. Martha has proven herself to be responsible, dependable and dedicated to her children and husband.”
How Did I Get Involved?
My name is Teresa Kinney and I am a citizen of the United States. I am writing this in support of Martha Gomez Locklear, her husband Matthew Locklear, and two (2) toddler sons Austin , 4 years old and Alexander, 2 years old, they live in Jacksonville, NC where Matthew works for the family’s roofing business which has been in business for over 50 years. The uniqueness of this family is both parents are deaf and both children are hearing. Martha and her younger sister escaped Mexico with their mother who illegally brought them to the United States in 1999. Her mother was seeking a better life for Martha then 15 yrs. old, who at the time had never learned to read nor write because a proper safe deaf education was not available in Mexico.
During the time Martha was in high school at the North Carolina School for the Deaf, NCSD, I operated a local franchise restaurant and assisted the school with job training of their deaf students. Martha’s home life was not ideal. In October 2004, Martha moved into my home where she lived until July 2007 when she married Matthew Locklear of Jacksonville, NC. Martha, Matthew and the boys are family to me is so many ways and we need to keep this family together. During her time in my home, Martha evolved from a quiet shy teenager to a mature, strong woman. Her educational skills grew exponential from zero to fifth (5th) grade level very quickly. She has such desire to learn to learn and her main passion became History. She even attended Close Up-Washington DC https://www.closeup.org/program/high-school . After attending Close Up, I saw an even more profound change in Martha. She had seen and met our leadership in DC and wanted to be part of the United States.
Since 2005, I have worked extremely hard to get Martha’s immigration papers completed. Roadblock after roadblock we encountered. Then a few years ago president Obama added the provisional waiver for spouses of certain US citizens. This allows the non-resident spouse to get a waiver (similar to a pardon) before they go back to their home country and apply for their visas and resident card. The provisional waiver is granted before she would leave the US and it removes the potential 10-year ban from the United States if the spouse does not pass hearing processes.
Help this beautiful family stay together. . Let us make this happen for this very, very deserving family.