November 20, 2014
11/19/14 Leader Post
Raul Gatica Bautista fled Mexico for Canada in 2005 with a bullet wound in his stomach and scarring on his face, grim testaments to the abuse the indigenous rights activist says he suffered at the hands of the Mexican police. Canada accepted him as a refugee then, but Gatica Bautista says this country would turn him away today because of changes last year that placed Mexico on a list of 42 countries deemed safe by the federal government. Asylum seekers from these countries have fewer appeal options and are deported faster than refugee claimants from other countries. On Wednesday, Gatica-Bautista and groups of protesters in several cities called on the federal government to take Mexico off the so-called “safe list,” citing the recent disappearance and possible massacre of 43 teaching students in rural Mexico and the ongoing persecution of indigenous rights activists. The group No One is Illegal has launched a similar petition.
November 5, 2014
11/04/14 Los Angeles Times
For so long, Nancy Landa kept secrets. Growing up in South Los Angeles, she never told friends that her parents had brought her illegally from Mexico when she was 9. Years later, after she had been elected the first-ever Latina student body president at Cal State Northridge and then gone on to work for a California assemblyman, she didn’t tell her colleagues about the deportation order filed against her. For a long time, she didn’t even tell her boyfriend. The immigration agents came one morning in 2009 while she was turning onto the freeway to go to work. They dropped her off that night in Tijuana, where she had to start over with zero connections. Once again she felt like a stranger in a strange land — this time missing Vietnamese pho and playing golf with friends — and once again she was keeping secrets.
October 6, 2014
10/05/16 New York Times
The smugglers advertised on the radio as spring bloomed into summer: “Do you want to live better? Come with me.” Cecilia, a restless wisp of a girl, heard the pitch and ached to go. Her stepfather had been murdered, forcing her, her mother and four younger siblings into her aunt’s tiny home, with just three beds for 10 people. It was all they had — and all a smuggler needed. He offered them a loan of $7,000 for Cecilia’s journey, with the property as a guarantee. “I gave him the original deed,” said Jacinta, her aunt, noting that the smuggler gave them a year to repay the loan, with interest. “I did it out of love.” The trip lasted nearly a month, devolving from a journey of want and fear into an outright abduction by smugglers in the United States.
September 23, 2014
09/14 By Juliana Kerr, Paul McDaniel and Melissa Guinan The Chicago Council on Global Affairs and the American Immigration Council
Elected and civic leaders throughout the Midwest are recognizing that they have a role to play in shaping immigration policy despite inaction at the federal level. Whether by launching programs to infuse the local economy with new talent or adopting strategies to socially integrate immigrants, there is an unprecedented commitment from local leaders understanding the importance of immigrant integration in the region. This report puts the range of Midwestern initiatives into context, offering a concise overview of state, city and metropolitan programs, as well as the robust non-governmental civic initiatives that sometimes operate alongside, or in place of, government-driven programs.
To read the report…
September 23, 2014
Mexico will free 14 Cuban migrants rescued by its navy this month and will give them permanent residency, a Mexican immigration official said on Monday. The Cubans were intercepted off the Yucatan peninsula badly sunburned and dehydrated after three weeks adrift at sea, and Mexico’s government said they would likely be deported. They were without food and survived by drinking rain water.
September 22, 2014
09/21/14 The New York Times
TIERRA BLANCA, Mexico — Soon after crossing from Guatemala into Mexico last week, the group of Honduran migrants spotted the police swarming the freight train known as “The Beast” that has dangerously but reliably ferried tens of thousands of people north, clumped atop and hanging off box cars. So they walked through bushes and along riverbanks to avoid detection. And then they walked some more, 10 hours a day for several days, parched and so starved that they grabbed what fish they could from the streams and fruit from the trees.
September 10, 2014
09/09/14 ABC News
The attorney generals from the United States, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras have agreed to form a high-level group to address the migration of unaccompanied children. U.S. Justice Department spokesman Brian Fallon says in a statement that Attorney General Eric Holder met with his counterparts in Mexico City on Tuesday.