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County supports federal initiative to protect immigrant military families

Cassie N. Saunders

County of San Diego Communications Office

The county's Office of Military and Veterans Affairs is promoting a federal immigration program that supports immigrant families of U.S. service members.

The Military Parole in Place (MPIP) program provides some members of U.S. military families temporary permission to remain in the country while seeking permanent residency.

The temporary immigration status allows spouses, widow(er)s, parents and children of U.S. service members to stay, work and travel freely in the United States. The Board of Supervisors previously approved promoting the program to reaffirm the county's support for service members and their families.

"Families can be divided when a loved one serves in the U.S. armed forces," said Rick Wanne, Director of County Self Sufficiency Services. "This program allows them to be reunited in our country and recognizes our military men and women for their honorable and selfless service."

People may be eligible for the program if the service member in their family is active duty in the U.S. armed forces, in the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve or has previously served as active duty or in the Selected Reserve and was not dishonorably discharged. Eligibility is available in single year increments.

Those who apply for the MPIP program submit specific documents to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Office where they live. These include:

• Completed Form I-131, Application for Travel Document (without fee). Applicants must hand write "Military PIP" in Part 2 instead of checking a box.

• Evidence of the family relationship, such as:

◦ Marriage certificate

◦ Documentation of termination of previous marriage

◦ Son or daughter's birth certificate

◦ Current or former service member's birth certificate with parent's name; or

◦ Proof of enrollment in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS)

• Evidence that the family member is a current or former member of the U.S. armed forces, such as a photocopy of the front and back of the service member's military identification card or DD Form 214.

• For parents of current and former service members of the U.S. armed forces, evidence the current or former service member supports the application for parole in place.

• Two identical, color passport-style photographs; and

• Evidence of any additional favorable discretionary factors that an applicant would like to have considered.

For more information on support in San Diego for military members and their families, visit

To apply for the MPIP program, go to


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