A Child Lost in Translation

The following Latino USA story was originally broadcast on May 31, 2019. It was also the recipient of a 2020 Gracie Award from the the Alliance for Women in Media. Huntsville, Alabama has a small, but growing Latino population. It's where Teresa Matías, a single working immigrant mother from Guatemala, lived with five sons. In 2015, Teresa joined a local Catholic church, baptized her sons and found them godparents. The godparents of her youngest son would take a special liking to him. Over the next year, a series of events would begin to unravel —in which the godparents got lawyers and judges involved— eventually resulting in Teresa giving up complete parental rights to her youngest son. But in all these meetings, Teresa, who knows only a few words in English and grew up speaking a Mayan language, never had a proper interpreter. Latino USA chronicles Teresa's story and how she ended up making a life-changing decision without full consent and proper translation.

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Latino USA offers insight into the lived experiences of Latino communities and is a window on the current and merging cultural, political and social ideas impacting Latinos and the nation.