Fashion Activism In 2020: How Brands Are Fighting For Immigrants’ Rights

Two years ago, Paula-Andrea, who prefers to go by her first name only, was flying to San Francisco for work, anxiously awaiting the pat-down she knew she’d receive from TSA. Navigating airport security had become nerve-wracking for the 28-year-old DACA recipient. This was not only because of her status, but also because of two words that were imprinted on her gray sweatshirt: visa issues. “I’m going through TSA and this woman [notices what I’m wearing] and says, ‘Oh, visa issues. My mom has visa issues,’ and she starts telling me her mom’s story while she’s patting me down,” Paula-Andrea said. “Then I get on my flight and the stewardess comes over, brings me a drink, and starts talking to me about her own visa issues and her journey because she migrated from Peru.” Paula-Andrea created her brand Visa Issues out of frustration with her status and the jarring language of immigration notices. Fleeing Cali, Colombia after the Pablo Escobar era, she emigrated to the United States at 11 years old and didn’t learn until she was applying for college that her father brought her here with unauthorized documents. Now a 30-year-old photographer living in Brooklyn, Paula-Andrea has amplified a topic that was unspoken in her family and was snubbed in recent presidential debates. Read more at Glossy.