Consulate helps locals receive IDs

Aldo Mora-Castro, a representative from the Mexican Consulate in Chicago, shows a Mexican citizen how to position his fingers while making fingerprints on national documents Thursday at the Illinois Hotel in Urbana. Erica Magda

Aldo Mora-Castro, a representative from the Mexican Consulate in Chicago, shows a Mexican citizen how to position his fingers while making fingerprints on national documents Thursday at the Illinois Hotel in Urbana. Erica Magda

By Kelly Gibbs

Local Mexican citizens needing documents such as passports or other identification from the Mexican government will be able to receive the assistance they need this weekend at Urbana Middle School.

UMS, 1201 S. Vine., Urbana, will be hosting Mexican consulate representatives after 5 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Although attendance was sparse during Thursday’s lunch hours, the Consulado General de Mexico staff remains optimistic about the weekend ahead.

“We were expecting more people, but hopeful they will turn out this weekend,” said Gonzalo Carret, employee of the Consulado General de Mexico.

“Sunday may be are biggest day since many people are not working.”

The opportunity to obtain documentation in the local area saves these citizens a drive to the Consulado General De Mexico’s office in Chicago.

“Documentation is the first step to the protection of Mexican people. It is very important to verify that they have a name and birthplace,” said Aldo Mora-Castro, employee. “If they are not American citizens, they at least need a Mexican passport and a Mexican ID for work, travel and most importantly security.”

In order to receive documentation, people need to show proof of Mexican citizenship, such as a birth certificate.

“Sometimes people are not prepared, they bring copies of their birth certificates, but this is not good enough,” said Francisco Valdes, Mobile Consulate of the Consulado General de Mexico. “We need an original copy.”

They also need to show proof of identification, such as an ID from either Mexico or the United States.

According to Consulado General de Mexico Web site, their mission is to fortify the image of Mexico.

They also want to gain a greater understanding of the United States through the culture and the arts, the promotion and the cultural cooperation, and the support of Mexican cultural industries.

“It is important for these people to obtain IDs not only to open an account or cash checks, but in case they get into an accident they need peace of mind that at least they have personal identification,” Valdes said.