N.I.R. is a series of works that has to do with the social stigma surrounding immigrants. Some people think that the only kind of immigrants that migrate to this country are the bad ones, Criminals, rapist, drug dealers. This photo series will show some people who have migrated because their parents made the decision for them and some who made the decision themselves. Due to what immigrants are being labeled they are scared and constantly hide who they are.
Many people migrate to America in search of the American Dream. Not just for themselves but for the entire family. Everyone has different reasons for leaving behind their home and family. One of those reasons could be because of the gang related violence that is occurring in some countries like El Salvador, México with the drug lords. Some of those people have brought with them their family, somewhere kids who are too young to understand what is going on, and do not have any say in the decision being made. Those kids that have been in the USA almost all their lives, speaking better English than Spanish, who don’t know many people from their homeland and now their home is the United States of America.
The title of this work is N.I.R., which stands for No Identification Required. Some sort of identification is required for a lot of things that we do in a daily basis or even just simple procedures. But there are some government entities, extremist people whose only concern is what is considered to be a legal and proper form of identification and immigration Status. These individuals and organizations only care whether an individual is legitimate by either having a permanent resident card, US passport or social security number, as if having a “legal” identification card is what defines a person’s worth. The irony of all this is that the people who are eventually deported are not the criminals and noncontributing members of society whom these individuals and organizations are concerned with but it’s mostly people who have migrated to work hard and to provide a better life to their families.
This series will be keeping the person’s identity anonymous. The technique used to keep the subject’s identity secret is achieved by using a slow shutter speed, meaning that the image is not capture instantly. It takes a few seconds to capture the movement and give the image the ghostly effect. The tittle of the work are the ages of each subject when they arrived to the USA.
Left el Salvador on February 18, 2002 on an airplane with destination to Washington D.C., USA. The reason for the trip was tourism and it was meant to last only three months. But once here, my parents saw the opportunity to enroll me in school so that I could learn English and be able to have a better life and a career. They left me under the care of my older brother while I stayed in school. I finished high school. Planes changed once I decided it to enroll in college, the prices for international students was too high and we could not afford to pay it. By trying to stay in school I was not able to renew my visa and so I lost it and stayed in the country as an illegal immigrant. After a few years of being in the country illegally, Ex-president Obama created an opportunity for certain people to get a working permit to those who are DACA also known as dreamer (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). Also, to be contributing members of society and the American economy. Therefore, we are here today working hard and moving forward.
I left April 9, 2014. We were a group of about 110 people. they would split it us into smaller groups and sent us on vans to san Salvador. Then from san Salvador we were moved to Guatemala in cars, vans, and buses. We were moved again but now to Mexico. We passed by Puebla, and Monterrey and then the Rio Grande. To get to Rio Grande we were transported in trailer in the inside where carry their merchandise. And if we wanted to use the bathroom they wouldn’t stop, instead they put empty paint bucket for everyone to use. We were moved at night only. We made a stop in house to wait out before we were taken to cross the dessert. We crossed the river in raft that was able to carry about 5 to 10 people. after crossing the river, we went a little hill. We walked through the dessert at night only. And when we would hear helicopter we would get on the floor and hide in the bushes and we were told not to look up for the helicopter because they could find us easier, we because of our eyes. The group I was traveling was of 11 people including the “coyote”. We were 5 women and 6 men. Migration caught all the guys and the only one who crossed over without getting caught were the women. When immigration caught the guys, we went back and looked to see if they had left and food. One of the guys was helping carry the food I had for the trip and I was carrying the water only. So, I didn’t have any food. But one of the other women was kind enough to give a tortilla. While crossing the dessert at night I was staying behind and could barely because it was so dark, so I had to scream and tell them I can’t see you. So, They had to come back and look for me. It took me a moth to get to my final destination which was Maryland, usa.