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At this busy border crossing Wilmer Salomon waited with a dozen other Haitian people to put his name on a list for an appointment with U.S. immigration officials.
Mexico has served as a liaison for desperate Haitians trying to reach the U.S. There are at least 4,000 Haitians in San Diego according to humanitarian organizations. In Nogales, more than 160 Haitians have signed up for appointments with U.S. authorities according to a Mexican immigration official.
“I know getting to the United States won’t be easy, but only then I’ll be satisfied,” Salomon said in French. Back in Haiti he worked as an auto mechanic but struggled to provide for his wife and two children. So Salomon left for Brazil in 2015 and planned to send money back to support his family. Brazil offered legal residency to 50,000 Haitians after the 2010 earthquake.