Yesica knew she was in a bad relationship. Her boyfriend had isolated her from nearly everyone she cared about and often threatened her, her family, and her friends. The violence was escalating and, one night, he sexually assaulted her. It was then that she knew she had to leave for good.
During their last violent encounter, as she tried to escape her boyfriend’s drunken rage, the police were called. Her boyfriend was arrested and Yesica and her daughter were taken to a local shelter. The following week, Yesica obtained a lifetime protective order from the County Attorney’s office.
While she stayed at the shelter, advocates put her in touch with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA) for help with her legal issues. TRLA helped Yesica obtain a U-VISA for herself and a daughter that was still living in Mexico. Throughout this time she continued to take advantage of the resources available at the shelter and even obtained a license to provide child care. She applied for a job with a local daycare center and was proud that she was rebuilding her life.
But Yesica was unaware that Child Protective Services had placed her on their child abuse registry due to the events surrounding her boyfriend’s arrest. This meant that she would not be able to get a job with a daycare provider. Yesica found out that she had time to appeal the issue and clear her name so she once again turned to TRLA for help.
TRLA worked with Yesica to prepare for the appeal hearing and arranged for witness testimony that would speak to the difficulties that victims of domestic violence have in leaving their abusers. TRLA attorneys prepared to show that Yesica was doing everything she could to protect her family and build a stable life. And when TRLA advocates spoke with representatives from CPS about Yesica’s situation, CPS agreed to dismiss the case and remove Yesica from the child abuse registry before the hearing had a chance to start.
Today Yesica and her two daughters continue to live and thrive in central Texas. Yesica hopes to one day open her own daycare facility.