Asylum seekers waiting in Mexico rattled by delays to US entry


Source: Al Jazeera

The United States has abruptly cancelled plans to bring asylum seekers into Texas at two ports of entry, dashing the hopes of hundreds who have been waiting for months in Mexico under a Trump-era policy President Joe Biden promised to unwind.

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said in a statement on Monday that “given current operational considerations”, it could no longer say when it would begin bringing in migrants through ports in Brownsville and El Paso, Texas.


Mexico calls on Biden to fix immigration status of Mexican nationals


Source: Reuters

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Incoming U.S. President-Elect Joe Biden should quickly fulfill campaign promises to launch an immigration plan, including giving dual nationality to Mexicans working in the United States, Mexico’s president said on Wednesday.

Immigration has become a priority issue for Biden, who is planning to roll back his predecessor’s harsh measures and enact sweeping reforms that would put 11 million people living illegally in the U.S on a path to citizenship.


Family seeks answers in immigrant’s death after detention

4/11/2019 – The Washington Post

 (Richard Vog/Associated Press)

By Amy Taxin

LOS ANGELES — A 27-year-old man died in a California hospital after he suffered a brain hemorrhage while detained by U.S. immigration authorities, his wife said Wednesday, demanding to know what caused his injury and whether he received appropriate medical care in custody.

Melissa Castro said she was called Feb. 8 by an Immigration and Customs Enforcement official and told that her husband had a “passing out episode” while in the custody of detention officials in Adelanto, California, and had been taken to the hospital.

Castro, who had delivered the couple’s baby five days earlier, said she found Jose Luis Ibarra Bucio in an intensive care unit and in a coma from which he never awoke.

Castro said she wants to know what happened to her husband, who was young and had no prior health problems. She said she heard from doctors that he had been airlifted from another hospital.

Read more…

Border Patrol: 128 immigrants found abandoned in Arizona

08/21/18 Washington Post

Border patrol agent by Flickr user °FlorianBorder Patrol authorities say 128 immigrants believed abandoned by smugglers in a remote desert area at the Arizona border with Mexico are facing deportation.

Agents at the Ajo Station patrolling near a border fence say the group included children — some as young as 4 — from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and Mexico.

The immigrants were found Friday after apparently being brought to the border by human smugglers who remained in Mexico.

Authorities say all the immigrants were medically evaluated and determined to be in good health before they were processed and turned over to the enforcement removal operations within Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Read more…

30-year-old images show how little has changed in the plight of immigrants at the U.S.-Mexico border

08/22/18 Washington Post

(Ken Light/Contact Press Images)

In the early 1980s, I began traveling to the U.S.-Mexico border to take make photographs for my book “To the Promised Land.” I wanted to tell the story of people desperate to reach America. Although my own immigrant family had no visual record of our journey from Eastern Europe in the late 19th century, I’d always found inspiration in the photographer Lewis Hine, whose work in the early 1900s capturing Ellis Island and images of child labor that had stunned a nation with scenes meant to be hidden — breaker boys in the coal fields, doffer girls in America’s spinning mills, newsies, oyster shuckers. People who just wanted to support themselves and their families, not unlike those trying to cross the border all those years later. I was proud of the work I’d done — and then I focused on other subjects of social concern, the mainstay of my work.

I returned to my contact sheets this year amid reports of harrowing immigration traumas, family separations, gang wars in Central America and a political debate on the subject that has barely advanced beyond where I left it 30 years ago. I’d hoped then that, despite the ascendancy of TV, the power of still photography was undeniably persuasive and could help shape the immigration conversation, if not shake public fears about immigrants.

Read more…

Thousands of immigrants could benefit from Supreme Court ruling, lawyers say

04/18/2018 The Washington Post

trumpmexico_083116getty_0A Supreme Court ruling on immigration this week is igniting a new political battle over federal officials’ power to deport foreigners who have been convicted of certain crimes.

The White House and the nation’s top immigration official said the 5-to-4 ruling will make it harder for the Trump administration to deport people convicted of some sexual offenses and kidnapping crimes, as well as burglary in some states, among other offenses.

“It is yet another example of the need for Congress to urgently close the loopholes that allow criminal aliens to avoid removal and remain in the United States,” Thomas Homan, acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said in a statement.

Read more…

Inside the Campaign to Register Mexicans in the U.S. to Vote—in Mexico

04/12/2018 The New Yorker

guerrero electionCarolina, a fifty-four-year-old nurse from Puebla, Mexico, stopped thinking of herself as a voter when she became an immigrant. She has lived in the United States, without papers, for the past eighteen years, and during that time she hasn’t voted in a single election. In the U.S., she is not allowed to vote. In Mexico, she is—the country began allowing its citizens who live abroad to vote in 2006—but to register she needed to return home to fill out paperwork. Making the trip would have been too risky, given her legal status, and, until recently, she didn’t feel her vote mattered, anyway. “I never had any interest—in Mexico, there was no democracy to vote in,” she told me. In the late nineteen-nineties, before she left for the United States, her brother was killed by members of a drug cartel, and she and her family suspected that local officials were involved in his murder. “All the politicians in Mexico were the same,” she said. “What was the point of voting for any of them?”

Read more…

NEW PUBLICATION | Bilingual, Bicultural, Not Yet Binational: Undocumented Immigrant Youth in Mexico & the United States

jill-anderson-coverBy Jill Anderson

Read the publication

An entire generation of children, adolescents and young adults has been caught in the crucible of increasing criminalization of immigrants coupled with neoliberal globalization policies in Mexico and the United States. These are first- and second-generation immigrant youth who are bicultural, often bilingual, but rarely recognized as binational citizens in either of their countries. Since 2005, an estimated two million Mexicans have returned to Mexico after having lived in the United States, including over 500,000 U.S.-born children. As of 2005, the population of Mexican-origin immigrant youth in the United States (first- and second-generation) reached an estimated 6.9 million. They have come of age in conditions of extreme vulnerability due to their undocumented status or the undocumented status of their parents.

The challenges that immigrant youth face in the aftermath of deportation and return are varied. Emotional distress, post-traumatic stress syndrome, depression and alienation are commonly described as key factors during the first months to years of return. These young people have experienced family separation, a sense of alienation, and human rights violations during detention and deportation. Systemic and inter-personal discrimination against deportees and migrants among the non-migrant population in Mexico can make an already challenging situation more difficult. For some, an accent, a lack of language proficiency in Spanish, and/or tattoos make it difficult to “blend in,” find jobs, or continue their studies. In addition to emotional and socio-cultural stress, there are also facing systemic educational, employment and political barriers to local integration and stability.

This paper examines the phenomenon of binational immigrant youth and, in the interest of constructing a binational agenda that privileges the human security and socio-economic integration of immigrant youth in the United States and Mexico in the short- and long-term, proposes a list of binational public policy recommendations.

Read the publication

Global Migration Flows

08/10/2016 International Organization for Migration (IOM)

world map.pngThe GLOBAL MIGRATION FLOWS interactive app tracks migrants around the world. This application is now being hosted by It is endlessly fascinating to explore where we’re from. The underlying data for the map was published by the UN DESA in 2015.

Using the app:
Choose whether you want to access information about migrants leaving a country (Outward) or migrants entering a country (Inward). Then click on a country and watch the pattern of migration to or from the chosen country. Countries that neither send nor receive migrants will fade out. Hover over a country or over a migrant cluster to access the data. Each circle represents up to 20,000 migrants.

This migration visualization tool is being developed by Locus Insight in collaboration with IOM. Locus Insight is a data visualization studio dedicated to clarifying complex data through engaging interactive charts. Our work is informed by an intelligent understanding of current world topics and animated by the latest interactive data technology.

Read more and use the app…

Ancient Mayan languages are creating problems for today’s immigration courts

08/09/2016 Los Angeles Times

mayanThe day Vinicio Nicolas found out whether he would be allowed to stay in the United States, and hopefully far from the gang trying to recruit him in Guatemala, he brought along an interpreter.

With the stakes so high, he wanted someone who spoke his native tongue. He had arrived in the U.S. just eight months before, and his English wasn’t good. But neither was his Spanish.

The language the 15-year-old needed an interpreter to wrestle with — for the sake of his future — was an ancient Mayan one called Q’anjob’al, or Kanjobal.

Read more…