I am a United States Citizen and I adopted my son Gabriel Sebastian Baires Bermudez after I learned about his story from a friend. Gabriel was born in El Salvador at five months old (preemie) in 2004 and thrown in a septic tank by his biological mother. He suffered brain trauma and brain damage that resulted from him being thrown. Gabriel arrived to the U.S. with me before the age of one to start living with my husband and me in our home in Virginia. Soon after he began receiving the medical treatment necessary for his well-being. Unaware of my son’s immigration visa when in 2008 I learned that when he was three years old he had been placed in deportation proceedings. When I consulted an immigration attorney he described that my son had only been given a six month period of stay in the U.S. and he had overstayed by living for more than one year in his new home. He suggested that Gabriel return to El Salvador voluntarily to clear up any misunderstandings. I returned to El Salvador on June 2011 and when we arrived I learned that I would have to reside in El Salvador for two years because Gabriel was born in a Hague Convention Country. This is an international agreement to establish safeguards to ensure that intercountry adoptions take place in the best interests of the child. I have lived with my son here in El Salvador for a year now, but my son is lacking the medical care he desperately needs. All we want is to be able to return home to continue my son’s treatment, which has been put on hold for more than a year. To be able to return home with my son, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) needs to grant Gabriel Humanitarian Parole for medical reasons
Obtaining a Humanitarian Parole for my son from USCIS is important to me because it pertains to the well being of Gabriel, an innocent child who is caught in the middle of existing government policies, while being denied the opportunity to continue his medical treatment. I also want my story to be known to prospective adoptive parents who want to adopt internationally. They should conduct a thorough research on the country that they plan to adopt from, because if they adopt from a Hague Convention Country they will need to reside abroad for two years. As a U.S. Citizen I feel that I have not received the support from my own country, the U.S. Embassy in El Salvador was discouraging and not welcoming. I am now in contact with my member of Congress, hoping that his office can obtain Humanitarian Parole for my son. But I need your support by signing this petition to put pressure on USCIS so that Gabriel and I can be in Virginia again, but most importantly so that my son can continue his medical treatment.
My story appeared on U.S. Spanish Speaking TV: