Victorina Morales is a guest of honor at the 2019 State of the Union after coming forward about being an undocumented immigrant working at a Trump property. Learn more about what she revealed, here.
She worked for President Donald Trump‘s New Jersey golf club for years, and she’s undocumented. After coming forward about her immigration status, and what it was like to work for the Trump property, Victorina Morales will face her old boss as a special guest at the State of the Union on February 5. Learn more about Morales and her story:
1. She went through hell to get to the United States. Morales says that she traveled 1000 miles to get to the United States, via bus and on foot in 1999. The journey took over six weeks. After arriving in Los Angeles, she was given a forged social security number and green card. She then flew to New Jersey, where her husband had arrived nine months earlier. In 2013, A friend who worked at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, NJ helped her get a job cleaning for $10 an hour. She left the job after coming forward with her story to The New York Times in December 2018.
2. She alleges that people at the golf course knew her undocumented status. Two months after Trump’s inauguration, employees at the golf club reportedly received a new employee handbook with a section titled “Immigration Compliance.” The section stated that employees need official government identification documents. One of the managers allegedly told her that she needed a new green card and social security card because there were “problems” with hers. Morales claims that a manager advised her to speak to a maintenance worker to get “new” ones. She also claims that some employees knew from the very beginning that she and others were undocumented. One employee would drive her and others to work because they couldn’t get drivers licenses.
3. She doesn’t regret coming forward with her story. Morales told Vox in an interview, “No, not at all. We are starting to raise our voices, and no one is going to silence us anymore. Especially now, I feel like people are listening to us, so many people in this country are hearing us. I am so happy that I finally came forward, that I found my voice. I am getting the chance to talk about our rights, that we are here struggling to put food on the table. I feel supported, thank God, and I have a lawyer, and hopefully things will turn out well.
4. She’s “relieved” she doesn’t have to work for Trump anymore. “I am so relieved that I don’t have to work there anymore. It’s incredible how bitter we all became. We were humiliated on a daily basis, and it just got worse,” she told Vox when asked what it was like working for Trump. “They even called us dogs. We saw [Trump’s] attitude on television, the things he said about immigrants like us without papers. Then I had to look at him and smile when he was at the club and clean for him. It was too much to bear.” Morales also told The New York Times that she’s exploring filing a lawsuit claiming workplace abuse and discrimination.
5. She was invited to the State of the Union by Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman. The Democratic congresswoman from New Jersey, where Morales worked for Trump, asked that she sit with her during the February 5 address because she wanted Trump to “look her in the face” while he speaks about how undocumented immigrants are allegedly endangering the US.
““hope that in his State of the Union address, Donald Trump will finally acknowledge the real face of immigrants in this country — women and children fleeing violence, law-abiding, tax-paying people who would do almost anything to be Americans,” Watson Coleman said in a statement. “And if he can’t, I’ve invited Victorina so that he may look her in her eyes to tell his lies to a familiar face.”