New Publication | A New Migration Agenda Between the United States and Mexico

By Andrew Selee

migration-policy-coverToday, the number of Mexicans crossing the border illegally has dropped to a 40-year low, and there are almost certainly more Mexican immigrants leaving the United States than arriving. A majority of the immigrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally are now Central Americans, and the U.S. and Mexican governments have been working closely to find ways to limit this flow and keep people from making the dangerous journey north. Perhaps most surprisingly, the number of Americans in Mexico has been growing rapidly, reaching somewhere around a million people, almost as large a group of U.S. citizens as live in all of the countries of the European Union combined.

The United States and Mexico each have interests in protecting their sovereignty and enforcing their immigration laws, but they will also need to work together to address Central American immigration, ensure robust growth in Mexico that keeps migration from starting up again, and protecting their own citizens living in the other country.

A New Migration Agenda Between the United States and Mexico,” was written by Andrew Selee, Executive Vice President of the Wilson Center and Senior Advisor to the Mexico Institute. In this policy brief, Selee reviews existing cooperation between the United States and Mexico on migration and provides policy recommendations for a more nuanced and balanced migration agenda.

This policy brief is the third of our series “Charting a New Course: Policy Options for the Next Stage in U.S.-Mexico Relations.” The policy briefs will be released individually and published as a volume in the spring of 2017.

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Can Trump fulfill his campaign promises on immigration and trade? Mexico hopes not

11/9/16 Los Angeles Times

Border fenceAfter months of apprehension, denial and behind-the-scenes crisis planning, Mexican officials on Wednesday had to face reality: the long-dreaded “Trump Effect.”

Even before Donald Trump was declared winner of the U.S. presidential election, the Mexican currency skidded in international trading, nearing a record of 20 pesos to the dollar. Discussions among many citizens took on a fatalistic, even funereal tone.

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

jill-anderson-coverBy Jill Anderson

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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.

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The Economic and Fiscal Consequences of Immigration

“Although this report focuses on the United States, the rise in the share of foreign-born populations is an international phenomenon among developed countries. And, given disparities in economic opportunities and labor force demographics that persist across regions of the world, immigration is an issue that will likely endure. Recent refugee crises further highlight the complexity of immigration and add to the urgency of understanding the resultant economic and societal impacts (…)

(…) To what extent do the skills brought to market by immigrants complement those of native-born workers, thereby improving their prospects; and to what extent do immigrants displace native workers in the labor market or lower their wages? How does immigration contribute to vibrancy in construction, agriculture, high tech, and other sectors? What is the role of immigration in driving productivity gains and long-term economic growth? “

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4 migrants die of apparent suffocation in eastern Mexico

10/5/16 The Washington Post 

migrantesMEXICO CITY — Four migrants died in Mexico’s eastern state of Veracruz, apparently suffocating in a truck that was carrying them and dozens of others to the border with the United States, Mexican officials said Wednesday.

The National Immigration Institute said in a statement that the four were among 55 migrants abandoned by their smugglers near the town of Tres Valles. Many of those who survived were severely dehydrated and had not had food or water for two days when they were found Tuesday evening.

Ten migrants remained hospitalized, including three still unidentified because of their delicate condition.

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Mexico’s Immigration Service Fires Agents for Corruption

03/10/16 ABC News

Mexico’s National Immigration Institute says it has fired three agents for allegedly shaking down Cuban migrants for bribes, the latest alleged corruption scheme at the agency.

The agency said Monday it has fired about 2,500 agents and other employees since 2013 for malfeasance or failing vetting and background checks.

The latest scandal involved three agents at an immigration detention center in Chiapas, on the border with Guatemala. Detained Cuban migrants there accused the three agents of demanding $4,000 in exchange for returning their passports, which would presumably allow them to reach the U.S. border.

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Former Mexican diplomat: ‘There are ways’ Mexico could pay for wall

09/22/16 New York Post

Jorge_Castaneda
Castañeda

A former top Mexican diplomat believes Donald Trump could get Mexico to pay for a border wall. Easily.

“If [Trump] really wants Mexico to pay for the wall, he has many ways of getting many Mexicans to pay for the wall,” Jorge Castañeda, Mexico’s former foreign affairs secretary, told the Hudson Institute this week,according to The Weekly Standard.

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