Domestic violence on undocumented Latina women in Texas
Higuera Florez, Silvia Andrea
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Domestic violence is a steadily growing problem and a source of major concern all over the country. Texas is not the exception, and, not surprisingly, different organizations have advocated for the adoption of resolutions declaring freedom from domestic violence as a human right. The City of Austin Council and Travis County adopted resolutions of this kind in 2014. Even though the topic has captured the attention of authorities, the situation is more complicated when it comes to undocumented Latina women, since they are forced to face other obstacles alongside being in an abusive situation. Such obstacles are the difficulties of accessing the legal system because of their lack of knowledge, or because of language barriers -- all circumstances occurring in a context of fear and threats by the perpetrator of the violence. In some cases, women and children are abused by United States citizens or legal permanent residents, who take advantage of their legal status and protection that the women and children lack. This report tells the stories of some women in Texas and tries to raise awareness of this matter within the community. The report also explains different legal remedies the women can use, such as the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), through which they may obtain lawful permanent residency.