Mary Sardinas had prepared a room in her Miami house for the arrival of her son from Cuba. He’d sold his home and left his job thinking he’d soon be living in the U.S. That was two years ago and he’s still in Cuba.
Sardinas is among thousands of Cubans living in the U.S. whose hopes of reuniting with family members have been put on hold since September 2017, when the Trump administration pulled most of its embassy staff out of Cuba in response to a mysterious illness.
Cubans fleeing the island have long enjoyed unique immigration privileges, including an almost certain path to legal residence once they touched US territory. But the outgoing Obama administration cancelled that policy and Trump’s consular shutdown means that legal migration has been restricted.