Marta Dominguez Mesa

Persona: Marta Dominguez MesaMarta Dominguez Mesa is a 62-year-old woman who came to the U.S. "sin papeles" (without papers, i.e., undocumented), about 15 years ago. Both she and her husband work in agromaquilas (agricultural factories), doing work such as animal slaughter and cleaning. She has many concerns about health and keeping both herself and her husband fit.


  • Age: 62
  • Nationality: Immigrant from Michoacan, Mexico "sin papeles" (without papers); has lived in U.S. for 15 years with her husband, who is authorized to work in the U.S.
  • Occupation: Laborer in an agromaquila (agricultural factory), cleaning the slaughterhouses and equipment
  • Marital status: Marital status: Married with two grown children, one in Mexico and one in the U.S.; proud grandmother of five adorable grandchildren
  • Location: Rural Iowa
  • Technology profile: Avid social media user
“I have so many people to keep in touch with on Facebook!”

Devices Marta has

Phone: Marta has a basic phone with text and talk capability. She uses it primarily for communicating with her husband on days they work different shifts. She also has a standard home phone.

Laptop Computer: Marta uses a laptop computer to look up recipes and home remedies, engage with friends on Facebook, communicate with her mother and sister via WhatsApp, and follow news in her home community.



Marta's husband signed up for a cable package that includes internet and phone service. She has very reliable internet at home, and she depends on this connection to maintain her social ties across the continent.

Social media platforms and web resources consulted

Frustration with technology

I don't reveal any personal information on social media anymore, and I erased lots of things from my Facebook page. You hear about these raids and families torn apart and you just think, that could have been me.


Information needs and background

Marta is a social person, and she likes talking with people and sharing gossip and information. Her documentation status is a big worry, though, and she's focused on keeping a low profile online. She trusts her friends and neighbors, but she has put a lot more privacy controls on her Facebook page this last year.
Health is a major concern for Marta. She worries about her mother, who is almost 90 and sometimes seems like she might be getting senile. Marta herself works with dangerous cleaning solutions, and her husband spends hours standing and crouching in awkward positions during the workday, causing him cramps, aches, and pains. She spends a lot of time focused on how to reduce his pain and reduce her asthma attacks. She relies on a lot of home remedies, but finds the ingredients she needs aren’t always available. As a result, she also finds herself looking up information about obtaining seeds and growing certain herbs like rosemary and yerba santa.

Information Sources and Library Use

To get her information, Marta:

Goals for using the library