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One of Philadelphia’s best new chefs serves up a whole lot more than food at her bustling Mexican restaurant.
Owner and chef Cristina Martinez is an undocumented immigrant, and her restaurant has become a hub for community members who are looking for both a bite to eat and an understanding ear.
“It’s not just me,” she tells Fusion. “There’s a lot of us who have businesses but we don’t have papers. Regardless, it doesn’t limit us.”
While Cristina is married to a US citizen, our nation’s outdated immigration system prevents her from becoming a part of this country on paper.
As a result, Cristina has not been able to see her children, who are in Mexico. “Everything I do is to plant a seed” for them, Cristina says.
The restaurant keeps Cristina and her husband busy — their food typically sells out before sundown, according to Fusion — but they remain dedicated to helping the immigrant community in both Philly and around the nation.
This chef risked her life to leave Mexico. Now she’s helping other undocumented immigrants—and feeding Philly: pic.twitter.com/p43EtRkdrT
— Fusion (@Fusion) September 20, 2016