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Unequal Treatment by the INS

June 03, 2001

"Bahraini Who Wed Marine Can Stay in America" (May 25) has Immigration and Naturalization Service spokeswoman Lauren Mack stating that Meriam Al-Khalifa got no preferential treatment and that her green card was granted after it was established that [there was conflicting evidence on whether she used] forged documents when she entered the U.S. on Nov. 2, 1999.

Well, I entered legally on Sept. 14, 1994, and am married to a citizen as well. Yet my application, even after seven years, is only in the fingerprinting stage. The INS claims to have a two-year process, but after being constantly pushed around by INS officials and security personnel, I'm still waiting. Where is the equality and justice for all, America?

Wake LeRoux

Glendale

* While I am very happy that Al-Khalifa and Jason Johnson were able to resolve their immigration status so quickly, I take exception to the claim made by the INS that Al-Khalifa got no preferential treatment.

My Honduran-born wife and I, together with my U.S.-citizen son, went to the U.S. Consulate in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, on Jan. 29 to our visa appointment. The consular officials told me that my wife was inadmissible for 10 years because she had been previously undocumented in the U.S. The INS officials treated us rudely and refused to approve a waiver, claiming that there was no hardship to myself or my son. My wife and son are now stuck in a country where there is no clean drinking water, where infectious diseases are rampant and where the government spends less than $21 per capita on public health. The INS does not think this is a hardship for my wife and son.

After contracting hepatitis A, I was forced to return to the U.S. to seek medical treatment under our health plan, but I had to leave my family behind.

Rick Tiefer

Downey

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