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Salvadoran woman marks 1 year in sanctuary near White House

Added 12-12-19 01:22:02am EST - “Yoga. Meditation. English.” - Washingtontimes.com

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Posted By TheNewsCommenter: From Washingtontimes.com: “Salvadoran woman marks 1 year in sanctuary near White House”. Below is an excerpt from the article.

These are some of the skills Rosa Gutiérrez López has learned since Dec. 10, 2018, when she became the first unauthorized immigrant to get refuge inside a religious institution in the Washington area.

The Salvadoran immigrant periodically shares her experience with members of congregations interested in also offering sanctuary, and feels more relaxed since her three U.S.-born children joined her six months after she moved into the Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church, located 9 miles from the White House.

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But even with the peace of mind she has found in her shelter, Gutiérrez struggles with the idea that she is confined to a seven-acre campus. Her case is seen by some as evidence of a cruel system that needlessly punishes immigrants with no criminal records, while immigration authorities and others say whoever comes into the country without authorization needs to deal with the consequences.

“Sometimes I take half-hour walks (inside the campus) but I never make it to the street. That is forbidden to me,” Gutiérrez told The Associated Press during a recent interview. She is also eager to remove from her ankle the 5.5-ounce electronic shackle that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, fitted her with two years ago.

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