José A. Alvarado Jr.

Photographer
 
Location: New York City, New York
Nationality: Puerto Rican American
Biography: José A. Alvarado Jr. is a Puerto Rican photographer dedicated to documenting class inequality, civic engagement, and contemporary issues in Puerto Rico and New York City. He works primarily in long-form storytelling, using visual imagery... MORE
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for The New York Times: This Venezuelan Family Won Asylum. Days Later, They Lost It.
josé a. alvarado jr.
Jan 9, 2024
Location: New York, New York
Summary
Millions of asylum seekers have overwhelmed the immigration system. A confusing mix-up is keeping one family in limbo.
Dyluis Rojas and his wife and children fled first from Venezuela and later from Colombia and Chile, crossing deserts, jungles and rivers with one goal: to make it to the United States and stay there.

The family arrived in June 2022. Less than a year and a half later, they were elated when they received news that their asylum application had been approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, one of the federal agencies that processes immigration matters. Mr. Rojas and his wife could soon begin to work. They would eventually be able to apply for green cards.

Then, a few days later, another letter arrived, with the same date and signed by the same official. It said that Mr. Rojas’s asylum claim had been deemed “not credible” and that he had not been granted asylum. The family faced the possibility of deportation.

“We were at zero all over again,” Mr. Rojas said.

It is unclear why two opposing notices were issued and which one will stand. Immigration lawyers said that Mr. Rojas’s situation seemed highly unusual, but that miscommunication by and within government agencies was not uncommon. Now, the family is waiting again, uncertain about their fate.

Photographed for The New York Times, with words by Nina AgrawalThis Venezuelan Family Won Asylum. Days Later, They Lost It.
Millions of asylum seekers have overwhelmed the immigration system. A confusing mix-up is keeping one family in limbo.
Nytimes.com
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for The New York Times: This Venezuelan Family Won Asylum. Days Later, They Lost It. by José A. Alvarado Jr.
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