September 21, 2005
Mexican Consulate visits to Colorado Springs are becoming so popular that local officials want a permanent office here. That isn’t expected anytime soon, but the visits will continue at least two times a year.
The next visit is expected around the end of this year. Several hundred Mexican nationals have turned out during previous consular visits to local libraries and Our Lady of Guadalupe Church. They apply for visas and passports, and get information about obtaining birth or wedding certificates and identification cards. The consulate also provides legal advice. “It’s not often, but it’s helped so many people each time,” said Joseph García, president of Pikes Peak Community College. García and other city leaders teamed up last year to bring the Mexican Consulate to Colorado Springs because of the growing number of Hispanics here. The nearest office is in Denver, and representatives travel to rural areas of Colorado and Wyoming to provide services. El Paso County was home to 6,777 Mexicans in 2000, according to census data. That number does not include those living here illegally. EvaLuz García-Burgos, the Mexican Consulate’s spokeswoman, said she is aware of the need for Mexican Consulate visits in Colorado Springs: “We know the population is so big, so we need another one,” she said. “We would have many more if we had the money.” CONTACT THE WRITER: 476-1669 or firstname.lastname@example.org