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Migrant Workers Could Leave Arizona; El Paso Not Likely Relocation Destination

Arizona’s controversial immigration law is supposed to go into effect in 90 days.

However, there are petitions going around that could push it back a couple years.

Still, many migrant workers in Arizona are now considering looking for other places to live – possibly even El Paso.

“I clearly see that laws like the one that arizona passed is going to lead to people beginning to leave, ” said Ruben Garcia.

He runs the El Paso Annunciation House, where a steady flow of migrants come in from Mexico seeking shelter.

Because migration patterns tend to move north, Garcia said he doesn’t expect an influx of Arizona’s immigrants here.

“I think they’re going to leave to places that are north, east and west. People are going to think very seriously before they put themselves south of the check points,” Garcia said.

Garcia explained that for undocumented workers relocating is a major decision, usually driven by a sense of safety that many of us just don’t understand.

“I’m going to try and imagine my having to leave where i’m living right now with whatever i can carry in my car,” said Garcia.

One Juarez woman says the violence forced her to leave home and uproot her family bring her two young children to a foreign country.

She showed ABC-7 a bite mark on her shoulder she received after a group of men robbed her place of work.Then one tried to sexually assault her.

For now, Garcia says most of Arizona’s undocumented workers are going to wait and see how hostile things get before relocating.

“I can’t foresee that on a particular day you’re going to have a massive number of people piling onto cars and drive out of Arizona,” said Garcia.

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