In a massive outreach to the Spanish speaking community, "Dia de la Familia", or "Day of the Family" was held in Tyler Saturday. More than 1,200 people came to the all day event, which helped Mexican families transition to East Texas.
Lines of people ran out the door at Tyler's YMCA. The booths weren't what brought the crowds, it was the Matrickula Consularez. Currently, it's the only form of identification recognized by both the Mexican and American governments.
"Now, it's more important, it's very very important," said Victor Covarruvias, a DJ for a Mexican radio station. Looking forward to being able to open his own bank account and visit Mexico, Covarruvias knows life will be a lot easier with the card.
"With a Matricula Consulares, you can say this is me, this is my identification from Mexico, and no big deal," said Covarruvias. More than thirty volunteers from area businesses gave their Saturday to helping Mexican nationals fill out necessary paperwork for both the Matricula Consulares and passports. Jesus Vera, knows how tough life can be without the card.
"Sometimes it can be kinda hard if you don't know the language to be able to get all these different services. and Matricula will help you open different doors," said Vera. Coming to the U.S. for college and teaching himself English, Vera teaches classes all day, breaking down the basics for buying a home or qualifying for a loan, something he says everyone should be entitled to.
"You can start monitoring your money, start saving your money be able to manage your money well, so they can start saving and eventually if they want to buy a house, that's the dream for anybody whether you're from Mexico, or United States," said Vera. Banks aren't the only places Mexican Nationals can benefit with the new I.D. card. Cardholders can also use it as a legal form of identification with insurance and telephone companies.
To find out more, contact the Mexican Consulate in Dallas.