Chicago Now | Yana Kunichoff
On Sunday at 11 am, Sonia Lopez, Hilda Burgos and Lorenzo Arroyo stopped eating. The three started a hunger strike to demand medical treatment for family members who have been denied a spot on the organ transplant list because they are undocumented.
And as a result, says Burgos, these loved ones are slowly dying.
Each of the hunger strikers has an experience related to transplants. Sonia Lopez’s son, Jorge, lost one kidney to kidney cancer and his second is diseased. Arroyo’s brother is in need of a liver transplant.
Burgos has the most hopeful story--her son was able to get a transplant after her sister volunteered to donate a kidney.
“We as mothers don’t want our kids to die,” said Burgos. Sonia Lopez first took the decision to go on a hunger strike, and “we are supporting her because we know what it is like.”
The barriers and hurdles to getting transplants for undocumented immigrants are varied, and depend on individual situations.
Firstly, Burgos says, a valid social security number is essential to getting on the transplant list.
Read more: http://www.chicagonow.com/chicago-muckrakers/2012/06/undocumented-life-mothers-go-on-hunger-strike-to-demand-transplants-for-undocumented-children/