So many migrant families living in Aotearoa call this country home. All they want is to contribute however they can, and be able to settle down safe in the knowledge that they can stay in NZ.
But instead, many are penalised and left in limbo by ableist migration health rules.
Chilean family Carolina, Cristian, Fernando and Ignacia have been trying to settle down in NZ for seven years. But Ignacia is disabled and Immigration NZ are putting the whole family through hell, seeing her as a cost and not as the loved and valued member of her family, of her school and of society that she is.
Now, here’s Ignacia’s brother Fernando to explain the problem.
Kia Ora, my name is Fernando, and this is my mom, this is my stepdad, and this one right here is my sister! Ignacia.
We have both been in New Zealand for the last three years, whereas our parents for almost seven years! Putting a lot of work into the country.
When my sister was born in 2004, she was diagnosed with a cognitive disability, and we were told she would never be able to walk, or develop, like any other kid!
At the age of 5, she started walking, two years later she started going to school. At the age of 13 she even moved to New Zealand, but unfortunately, she had to leave the country, since her visa was rejected.
My mom has always battled against immigration, she’s the strongest person I know. During the time my sister was in Chile, she didn’t really have a good time, and not just because she was pulled apart from our mother, but also because she had to go through a lot of bad things!
Since my mom never gave up on trying to give us a better future, she managed to bring us to New Zealand, place that we like to call home now.
But the battle against immigration haven’t stopped yet!
We finally have an opportunity to apply for residency, but unfortunately my sister’s visa is about to get rejected again! And this time we all would have to leave New Zealand.
Immigration keeps on saying that she is a really high cost to the country, and in simple words, a burden!
Please, help us to stay in New Zealand by just signing the petition Let Ignacia Stay.
We would really appreciate your help, and don’t forget to share this story!
Families should not be pulled apart, and people with disabilities should not be seen as cost! Instead, as human beings, just like you!