- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 23, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Mexicans living in Alaska will soon have to travel out of state to receive services from the Consulate of Mexico, but a group is petitioning to keep the Anchorage office open.

The consulate plans to close its doors in November, citing economic issues and a lack of participation, KTVA-TV reports (https://bit.ly/1FeFwvA). However, Anchorage community leader Daniel Esparza is finding signatures to stop the move.

Esparza said nearly 4,000 Mexicans in Alaska receive services at the consulate annually. So far he has collected about 900 signatures.

“It’s a huge impact and here in Alaska not just for the Mexican community, it’s for the Latino community in general,” Esparza said.

He said the consulate doesn’t just benefit people from Mexico as other Latin American residents also use the office as a resource.

“A lot of people from El Salvador stop by in the consulate and say how can I contact my consulate in San Francisco, that kind of help, that kind of stuff,” Esparza explained.

A representative from the consulate in Seattle will be in Anchorage on Thursday to discuss the closure.

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Information from: KTVA-TV, https://www.ktva.com


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