5 facts about Mexico and immigration to the U.S.

2/11/2016 Pew Research Center

Hundreds of thousands of immigrants participate in march for Immigrants and Mexicans protesting against Illegal Immigration reform by U.S. Congress, Los Angeles, CA, May 1, 200Pope Francis is expected to make immigration a major theme of his visit to Mexico. By traveling northward across Mexico, he intends to symbolically retrace the journey of Mexican and Central American migrants traveling to the United States. After the pope leaves Mexico City, his route will begin in the southern state of Chiapas, which shares a long border with Guatemala, and end in Ciudad Juárez, located across the U.S.-Mexico border from El Paso, Texas, a longtime entry point to the U.S.

U.S. immigration from Latin America has shifted over the past two decades. From 1965 to 2015, more than 16 million Mexicans migrated to the U.S. in one of the largest mass migrations in modern history. But over the past decade, Mexican migration to the U.S. has slowed dramatically. Today, Mexico increasingly serves as a land bridge for Central American immigrants traveling to the U.S.

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Step by Step on a Desperate Trek by Migrants Through Mexico

2/8/2015 New York Times

ARRIAGA, Mexico — The police truck appeared suddenly, a glint of metal and glass. The migrants broke into a sprint, tripping over cracked pavement as an older woman sweeping her stoop urged them to hurry.

The 10 men rounded the corner and hid behind a row of low-slung trees. Four days into their journey from Central America, the new reality onMexico’s southern border was setting in: Under pressure from the United States, the Mexican authorities were cracking down.

Minutes passed. The men fanned out and doubled over to catch their breath. Along the tree line, a man approached, wearing flip-flops and a collared shirt. He told them not to worry — he knew the way north.

Small, with jaundiced eyes, he was practiced in the art of smuggling. He could spot patrols, flag down vehicles for rides, even navigate the hidden trails carved into the lush countryside. They could trust him, he promised. He just wanted to help.

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Texas keeps National Guard at Mexico border amid surge in minors crossing

12/15/2015 The Guardian

Border fence by couchlearnerRepublican Texas governor Greg Abbott on Tuesday extended the deployment of National Guard troops at the Mexico border due to a spike in the number of unaccompanied minors entering the country.

The order comes in the wake of US Border Patrol figures that show more than 10,000 unaccompanied children crossed into the US in October and November. That is double the number of crossings in the same two months last year.

The uptick has already prompted Border Patrol to open two shelters in Texas and one in California.

“Texas will not sit idle in the face of this challenge,” Abbott said. “We will not be victimized as a state by a federal government’s apathetic response to border security.

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Cuba detente creates migrant crisis in Mexico

11/9/2015 The Financial Times

“They have to move faster, there are a lot of people waiting here without adequate living conditions,” said Lionel Hernández, 28, huddling with other Cuban migrants in the doorway of the Tapachula migration office in southern Mexico to escape the pounding rain.

A young woman from Havana looked in dismay at a soggy stack of papers. She had scrawled down the names of hundreds of fellow Cubans gathered outside the Tapachula facility to help Mexican migration authorities process their requests for transit visas. “There are more than 170 Cubans here now, but more keep arriving,” she said, sighing. “It is impossible to count them all.”

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Increased Enforcement at Mexico’s Southern Border

wolaAn Update on Security, Migration, and U.S. Assistance

New Report by the Washington Office on Latin America

In a report released today, the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) reveals that, far from deterring migrants from making the journey north, the most notable effects of Mexico’s Southern Border Program have been a significant uptick in apprehensions and changes in where and how migrants are traveling. These changes expose migrants to new vulnerabilities, while isolating them from the network of shelters established along traditional routes.

From when it was announced in July 2014 to June 2015, Mexico’s stepped-up migration enforcement resulted in a 71 percent increase in apprehensions of Central American migrants and potential refugees, compared to the same period one year earlier. Based on research and visits during the last two years to Mexico’s southern border zone, WOLA researchers found that Mexico’s increased apprehension and rapid deportation of migrants has not been paired with a greater capacity to screen them for protection concerns, leading many to be deported back to dangerous situations in their home countries.

Read the report…

UPCOMING EVENT | Central America – North America Migration Dialogue: Policy Brief Series

children-northern-mexico-credit-kelly-donlan2_0WHEN: Tuesday, October 20, 9:00am-11:00am

WHERE: 5th Floor Conference Room, Woodrow Wilson Center

Click here to RSVP.

The Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute and Latin American Program, CIESAS, and Georgetown University are pleased to invite you to the Central America – North America Migration Dialogue Policy Brief Series. The goal of the Central America – North America Dialogue (CANAMID) is to gather and disseminate rigorous analyses on Central American and Mexican migration at its points of departure, transit and settlement communities in Mexico and the United States. Please join us for the launch of the first set of eight CANAMID policy briefs.

Opening Remarks & Introduction to the CANAMID Project and Policy Briefs Series

Duncan Wood
Director, Mexico Institute, Wilson Center

Susan Martin
Georgetown University

Pablo Mateos
CIESAS Research Center, Mexico

Panel: Central America – North America Migration

Moderated by:
Cynthia Arnson
Director, Latin American Program, Wilson Center

Carla Pederzini, Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City
A Historic and Demographic Outlook of Migration from Central America’s Northern Triangle

Pia Orrenius, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Central Americans in the U.S. Labor Market: Recent Trends and Policy Impacts

Bryant Jensen, Brigham Young University, & James Bachmeier, Temple University
Central American Children in the U.S. & Education

Pablo Mateos, CIESAS Research Center, Mexico
Highlights from Remaining Research

Discussants:

Lindsay Lowell
Georgetown University

Phil Martin
UC Davis

Click here to RSVP. 

SMU Tower Center launches unique research program for policy-based analysis of Texas-Mexico relationship

9/8/2015 Southern Methodist University

DALLAS (SMU) – SMU’s John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies is launching an ambitious new program to research and promote policy-based discussion on the economic, political and social ties between Mexico and Texas.

The program is made possible through a $1 million gift from GRUMA-Mission Foods, a Mexican corporation with global reach headquartered in Dallas.  The program is designed to elevate the frequently fractured conversations about and between Texas and Mexico, creating a platform that examines shared issues through a policy lens. Plans include:

  • Texas-Mexico research, grants, reports, and white papers
  • Binational and bilingual annual conferences
  • Academic seminars and public forums

“Economics, energy, migration, culture, human capital, internet technology and cyber security are obvious topics for study, but the door is open,” said Juan Antonio González Moreno, Chairman and CEO of GRUMA. “We found in this program a tremendous opportunity to build a foundation for what should become the primary think tank on Texas-Mexico relations.” The list of potential topics is open to almost anything that impacts the relationship between Texas and Mexico.