Mexican official
concerned about
countrymen in isles

By Leila Fujimori

The consul general of Mexico from San Francisco will meet with local government officials this week about potential legal and immigration problems facing Mexican nationals in Hawaii.

Consul General Georgina Lagos, whose consular office covers Hawaii, arrives in Honolulu today and will visit through Saturday. She will also meet with the local Mexican community and interview candidates for honorary Mexican consul in Hawaii.

Lagos is scheduled to meet with Donald Radcliffe, district director of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service; Honolulu Prosecutor Peter Carlisle; Marian Tsuji, deputy director of the state Corrections Division; state Attorney General Earl Anzai; and Abelina Shaw, chief of staff to the mayor.

The consul general will seek to ensure that Mexicans living in Hawaii receive human rights protection and are not subjected to racial profiling, discrimination or abuse, said consulate spokesman Bernardo Mendez.

Also on Lagos' agenda is getting an identification card issued by the consulate for Mexican nationals officially recognized in Hawaii.

An estimated 40,000 Mexicans and Mexican Americans live in Hawaii, according to the consulate office.

"While many, many Mexican nationals lack a piece of identification, this is like a short form of a passport," she said. "It shows this person is a legal resident where the card is issued and helps people get many everyday services, particularly after Sept. 11 when a lot of people are required to show a piece of ID to enter public buildings or to travel."

The wallet-size card is recognized in many jurisdictions throughout the United States.

Lagos will also interview three candidates for the position of honorary consul of Hawaii, a position left vacant at the beginning of the year.

The honorary consul provides a channel for Mexican nationals in Hawaii to the consul general in San Francisco for services, and provides applications and help in filling out those forms.

Lagos will meet with Mexican community members to learn how the consulate can help with their needs, from farming to education.

For more information, call Marie Villa at 485-2079 or 291-4982.

Lagos' visit coincides with the visit of the Mexican tall ship the Cuahtemoc, a floating naval academy used to train Mexican naval cadets. The ship arrives at 10 a.m. today at Aloha Tower. It will be open to the public 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Sunday.

E-mail to City Desk


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