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VIDEO: people talk about racist calls asking DC Metro not to help Salvadoran woman killed in Red line train accident

June 25, 2009

Relatives of Ana Fernandez, the Salvadoran woman who was killed at the crash of DC Metro trains, said they are receiving hate phone calls saying that they should not get any benefits from Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority – WMATA because she was an immigrant and implied that she was not American. Ana Fernandez was documented and she is the mother of 6 U.S. citizens. This is what DC residents think of that.

Today I spoke with DC Councilmember Jim Graham who is the chairman of the WMATA board. Graham said that Metro has given $250 million dollars to help the relatives of the nine people killed in the June 22 accident, including the Fernandez family.

Ted Loza, chief of staff for Graham said that the Fernandez family will be covered by Metro regardless of racist protests. Also I spoke to Izara Fernandez, one of the six children that survived Ana Hernandez. She said her family is doing alright, and she and her five siblings are still coping with this tragedy and are not paying attention to the racist calls one of her uncles received. Many friends, neighbors and relatives are visiting the Fernandez family to show their support in their Hyattsville, MD home.

Today the National Council of La Raza posted this in its Facebook:

In an astonishing display of insensitivity, a number of callers paid their respects to the family of a victim in Monday’s tragic WMATA train collision, not with condolences, but with hate. Callers harassed the family of the late Ana Fernandez, mother of six, seizing onto her Hispanic surname and reports that she had emigrated from El Salvador as an excuse to intimidate her children and relatives.

According to, the family of Fernandez received several threatening phone calls questioning her legal status and that of her children. Ana’s sister has said that Ana was here legally and that all of her children were born in the U.S.

Our condolences go out to the family, and our outrage goes to those who made these calls.

Oh by the way, the note about the racist calls was first posted again by WTOP radio. Great job.


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