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Central America/Mexico Migrant News Brief for April 22, 2016

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A compilation of this week’s top articles and reports related to issues of migration from Central America and Mexico (articles in English and Spanish).

More on Supreme Court DAPA/DACA Case

•  What I Will Do When I Get My Papers
Olga Armas, The New York Times, April 22, 2016
“My daughters know that if DAPA goes forward, our lives will change. Dad will be able to look for another type of work that isn’t so hard on his body. I will be able to get a driver’s license and a car and drive them to visit colleges and go to robotics club competitions.”

•  Why the Supreme Court will likely #UnfreezeDAPA — i.e. “Don’t Sweat the Headlines”
Marshall Fitz, Medium, April 19, 2016
“In particular, yesterday’s arguments reinforced the federal government’s position that Texas had no basis to file this lawsuit in the first place. The Solicitor General led with and effectively closed with the argument that Texas has not defined an injury that can be redressed by the courts.”

•  Who Will Be Affected By the Supreme Court’s Big Case on Immigration
Max Ehrenfreund, The Washington Post, April 18, 2016
“The plan Obama put forward in 2014 would offer relief to two broad categories of undocumented immigrants. The first includes parents whose children who are citizens or legal permanent residents. . . . The second group includes the immigrants who were brought here illegally as children and were not granted a reprieve under the 2012 action.”

•  [Video] Grupos proinmigrantes alistan protesta en la Corte Suprema por DAPA y DACA
Univision, 12 de abril de 2016
“Grupos proinmigrantes planean asistir a la audiencia y manifestarse, pidiendo a los magistrados ratificar la acción ejecutiva migratoria del Presidente Obama, que beneficiaría a unos cinco millones de indocumentados”.

•  Who Cares If They’re Legal?
Noah Feldman, Bloomberg View,  April 18, 2016
“‘We are not trying to change anybody’s legal status,’ Verrilli said. ‘If the court thinks it’s a problem and wants to put a red pencil through it, it’s totally ….fine. Really.’ All Obama needed to do, he asserted, was to defer deportation of the immigrants in question.”

•  Obama Immigration Plan Seems to Divide Supreme Court
Adam Liptak and Michael D. Shear, The New York Times, April 18, 2016
“A loss for Mr. Obama would vindicate Republican accusations that he has acted lawlessly in exceeding the limits of presidential power and has not done enough to secure the nation’s borders. A victory for him would uphold one of the central legacies of his presidency and affect the lives of countless immigrants.”

•  Obama’s Immigration Action Prompts Heated Exchanges at Supreme Court
David Smith, The Guardian, April 18, 2016
“Justice Sonia Sotomayor clashed with the solicitor general of Texas on Monday as America’s politically charged immigration debate came to the US supreme court. The court heard arguments over whether to revive Barack Obama’s plan to spare roughly 4 million undocumented immigrants from deportation that would tear many families apart. His executive action was challenged by 26 states, all of which are led by Republican governors.”

•  Immigration Case: Texas Concedes Most Important Points
Rep. Luis Gutierrez, The Huffington Post, April 21, 2016
“That’s right; the State of Texas has conceded what we already know: that the President is acting within the laws passed by Congress and the legal boundaries set by the Constitution, just as every President has done in modern times.”

Root causes

•  Militares en Guatemala y México: condiciones y factores que permiten la impunidad.
Ana Lorena Delgadillo, Newsweek, 17 de abril de 2016
“Cuando se cometen graves violaciones a los derechos humanos, el ejército ha demostrado ser uno de los cuerpos de seguridad más intocables e impunes en la historia de varios países”.

•  Which Future? Ideas for a Better Central America
Brian Winter, Americas Quarterly
“The new issue of Americas Quarterly looks at Central America’s so-called Northern Triangle of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras and asks: What would it take for a similar turnaround to occur there?”

•  Una guerra del siglo veintiuno
Sergio Ramírez, El Faro, 19 de abril de 2016
“Ninguna conversación pasa de tres minutos en San Salvador sin que vaya a dar al tema de las pandillas, y nadie, al final de las múltiples vueltas y revueltas que se le da al tema, se atreve decir que la paz llegará a corto plazo. Porque esta es una guerra, distinta en su naturaleza a la que el país vivió en los años ochenta, pero una guerra al fin y al cabo”.

•  Llega caravana de CA y México a la ONU; exigen “el fin de la guerra contra las drogas”
David Brooks, La Jornada, 19 de abril de 2016
“La Caravana por la Paz, la Vida y la Justicia llegó desde Centroamérica y Mexico a la sede de la Organización de Naciones Unidas (ONU), donde se encontró con representantes de movimientos que se oponen a la guerra contra las drogas de decenas de otros países y con sus contrapartes estadunidenses”.

•  We Won’t Solve the World’s Drug Problem by Locking Up Latin American Women
Maya Thomas-Davis, The Guardian, April 20, 2016
“Thousands of stories like Lorena’s lie behind the alarming number of women imprisoned for drug crimes in Mexico, where they account for 53% of incarcerated women at the federal level. Of these women, 43% are indigenous: a disproportionate number given they make up only 5% of Mexico’s overall female prison population.”

•  Líder de la Cicig espera que la Maccih rinda frutos en Honduras
EFE, La Prensa, 19 de abril de 2016
“El abogado colombiano Iván Velásquez, jefe de la Comisión Internacional Contra la Impunidad en Guatemala (Cicig), expresó su deseo este martes de que la Misión de Apoyo Contra la Corrupción y la Impunidad en Honduras (Maccih) ‘pueda desarrollar el objeto de su presencia (en el país)’”.

•  Óscar Martínez on Why El Salvador Is a ‘Good Place to Kill’
Jared Goyette, Public Radio International, April 20, 2016
“Martínez is willing to change some things about his life to deal with living in a country with one of the highest murder rates in the world. He, for example, takes his 3-year-old daughter to shopping malls, instead of public parks. He knows why he is a target, but that’s one thing he doesn’t plan to change.”

•  El futuro de un ciudadano en México depende de dónde nace y no de oportunidades: estudio
Juan Luis Garcia Hernández, Sin Embargo, 21 de abril de 2016
“El CEEY reportó que los hijos de padres en los estratos sociales más bajos no tienen tantos problemas para asistir a la primaria, pero sí para llegar a la universidad”.

•  An Interview With Gustavo Castro, Sole Witness to Assassination of Berta Cáceres
Danielle Marie Mackey, The Intercept, April 18, 2016
“Castro’s experience over the past month provides a remarkable glimpse into the Honduran justice system, which is notorious for its culture of impunity.”

Mexican Enforcement

•  We Pay Mexico to Catch Refugees. Kids Suffer.
Bill Frelick, Houston Chronicle, April 20, 2016
“On the same day in July 2014 that President Obama sent Congress an emergency supplemental request of $3.7 billion ‘to comprehensively address this urgent humanitarian situation,’ his Mexican counterpart, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, issued a decree announcing the Programa Frontera Sur (Southern Border Program) to boost migration enforcement efforts in four southern Mexican states.”

•  A Trying Transition
Jonathan Levinson, Americas Quarterly
“Danilo identifies as female but used male pronouns to refer to himself when he spoke to AQ. Robbed of his female clothes, he has found it impossible to maintain his appearance traveling north. He is among the surprisingly high number of LGBT people fleeing the Northern Triangle to Mexico and the United States.”

•  [Video] Niños Migrando
Instituto Mexicano de Doctrina Social Cristiana, 11 de abril de 2016
“El estudio Niñez migrante, en su tránsito por México, vulnerabilidad y propuestas de mejores prácticas, del Imdosoc, precisa que entre 2014 y 2015 “el flujo de niños no acompañados es mayoritariamente masculino; sin embargo, la presencia de niñas y adolescentes se ha incrementado desde 2014 de manera importante, particularmente durante 2015”.

U.S. Enforcement

•  The Dark Side of Immigration Discretion
The New York Times, April 20, 2016
“The administration, while fighting to protect a humane immigration policy in the Supreme Court, should work just as hard to protect the lives of traumatized migrants. Instead, it has been placing them in misery and peril.”

•  Meet 2 Central American Refugee Kids Who Are Stuck In The U.S. Immigration System
Esther Yu-Hsi Lee, ThinkProgress, April 21, 2016
“David and Alex, two Guatemalan teenage cousins, were part of the wave of unaccompanied children who arrived in the United States from Central America starting in late 2013. They separately entered the country one year and seven months apart to leave dire poverty and to reunite with family in Virginia.”

•  Frustrated by New U.S. Program to Take in Migrants, Central American Parents Turn to Smugglers
Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times, April 21, 2016
“Advocates say Sorto is not alone — that other parents frustrated by delays in the Central American Minors program are turning to smugglers. State Department officials said it takes about eight months on average to vet families but acknowledged that after more than a year, only a fraction of the 8,001 who applied came to the U.S., fewer than 200.”

•  Latino Lawmakers, Others Push to Stop Veterans’ Deportations
Suzanne Gamboa, NBC News, April 21, 2016
“‘Any immigrant documented or otherwise who puts their life on the line to serve the United States in uniform should be entitled to their VA benefits and a peaceful life in our great nation. It is incomprehensible that we treat some veterans like criminals more than heroes,’ Gallego said in a statement.”

•  This Father Won’t Leave A Chicago-Area Church Until ICE Promises Not To Deport Him
Esther Yu-Hsi Lee, ThinkProgress, April 19, 2016
“As the U.S. Supreme Court is weighing whether to grant broad deportation protection for millions of undocumented immigrants living in the country, Federico Moreno is just one example of someone who’s currently suffering the consequences of harsh enforcement policies.”

•  Court Order Revives Child Migrant Battle
David Rogers, Politico, April 19, 2016
“A federal court order handed down this week gives new life to a long-running battle over whether child migrants have a due process right to legal counsel in deportation proceedings.”

•  Deportation Battle: ‘You Can’t Just Take Apart a Beautiful Family and Expect It to All Be Good the Next Day’
Lauren Slagter, MLive, April 22, 2016
“Members of the Washtenaw Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights hope public outcry will be enough to prompt people in positions of authority to take action on behalf of Bernabé-Ramirez and her 16-year-old daughter, Sayra. The Ann Arbor residents are set to be deported on April 29.”

Resources

•  Niñez migrante, en su tránsito por México
Instituto Mexicano de Doctrina Social Cristiana, 2016
“La creciente preocupación sobre los derechos de los Niños, Niñas y Adolescentes migrantes . . . en el contexto actual migratorio representa un reto para las sociedades y los gobiernos de los países expulsores, de tránsito y de destino, sobre todo por la vulnerabilidad y la poca visibilidad que existe en el camino emprendido por ellos”.

•  Call for Information: Reports of Raids Against Central Americans
American Immigration Lawyers Association
“Keep up the fight to #StopTheRaids. And know that your support matters. Assist advocacy by sharing stories of new raids in your community using AILA’s online monitoring tool.”

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*The Central America/Mexico Migrant News Brief is a selection of relevant news articles, all of which do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Latin America Working Group.