Imperial County and Mexican Consulate vow Child Support Services cooperation across border

(L-R)  President of Imperial County Board of Directors Michael W. Kelley and Mexican Consulate of Calexico Carlos Flores Vizcarra sign Child Support Services MOU in Calexico on Tuesday morning. Photo by Javier Guerrero.

CALEXICO  — The County of Imperial and the Mexican Consulate in Calexico signed a Memorandum of Understanding in partnership with Child Support Services on Wednesday that aspires to assist children on both sides of the border who have been separated from their families due to the push-pull processes of immigration in the region.  

“Our region is very important, and I think that we maintain this spirit of openness and friendship towards the folks who work and live in Calexico and those who work and live in the valley of Mexicali,” stated Mexican Consulate in Calexico Carlos Flores Vizcarra.

California is home to millions of people who frequently cross the border daily which creates various societal dynamics that impact the region.  Aside from the positive benefits of traversing mirroring border towns, a negative consequence deals with the issue of minors getting lost or stranded along the way and the uncertainty of those young ones being tended to responsibly by the proper authorities.

“Imperial County is the melting pot for many individual different ethnic backgrounds,” noted President of Imperial County Board of Directors Michael W. Kelley during the signing.

I would venture to say that 95% of Valley people have a connection to Mexicali, whether it be a point of origin, or whether we have relatives there, or whether we conduct business there. So, I want to make it very clear that we consider us a region, not two separate countries or two separate items. We are one. We came from the same place, we do the same things, and work very hard and it leads me to say that some-day we would be a world of one people with no borders, no walls – that we all work together in unison for the benefit of mankind.  That’s what we should do as human beings.  Work for the same goal of peace, tranquility, and a safe place for all human beings to live.  I think Mexicali and Imperial County is in the first step in recognizing that we are one people.  We work together, we support each other and nothing stops us from being colleagues.”

Imperial County received the state of California Association of Government’s Merit Award for its relationship with Mexicali in respect to the MOU and to working together to insure the children that are effected through child support are handled and dealt with properly. 

“I continue to be in awe of the partnership we have established and that they have encouraged us to pursue,” said Assistant Director of Child Support Services Liza Barraza. “As they have allowed us to assure that child support needs of the communities across our borders are not forgotten. Without their approval and support of our vision, the work we do could not be accomplished. Together we have found solutions to streamline the processing of our child support applications and solutions to expedite the processing of child support applications. Through this MOU we show our continued commitment for the benefit of our mutual clients seeking child support whether the child is a mother or a father.”