Family flees violence in Honduras, fights to stay in US

Feb 10, 2018, 12:23 AM | Updated: 8:43 am
Vicky Chavez found sanctuary at the First Unitarian Church, where she now resides with her two chil...
Vicky Chavez found sanctuary at the First Unitarian Church, where she now resides with her two children. (KSL TV)

SALT LAKE CITY — She was facing deportation and almost boarded a plane to Honduras on January 31.

Instead, Vicky Chavez made a last minute decision to fight to stay in the country.

“We were running a risk to go, and I chose for the safety of my kids to find help and seek sanctuary,” Chavez said Friday, nine days later.

Chavez found sanctuary at the First Unitarian Church, where she now resides with her two children.

“I miss being able to be with my family and staying with my mom,” she said through a translator. “I miss that the most.”

Chavez fled Honduras and the violence she faced at home, and has sought asylum status in the U.S.

Amy Dominguez with Unidad Inmigrante said Chavez had gone through the process legally, and the system failed her.

“She came into the United States, she was processed by ICE and released by ICE to pursue an asylum case,” Dominguez said. “We are here at this point years later and $15,000 down, paying legal fees and things like that, and things have still not changed. For people to say, ‘well why doesn’t she do things the legal way’—she is doing things the legal way. This is just the way that the immigration system is broken.”

Chavez said she was uncertain of the legal status of the case, but was hopeful she might have an update soon—potentially as early as next week.

“I have faith we’ll get out soon,” Chavez said. “I will be staying here however long that takes.”

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Family flees violence in Honduras, fights to stay in US