en English

Central America/Mexico Migrant News Brief for February 26, 2016

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

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).

See: Root Causes; Mexican Enforcement; U.S. Enforcement; New Reports & Resources.

Root Causes

•   El Salvador’s Violence: No Easy Way Out
Sarah Kinosian, Angelika Albaladejo, and Lisa Haugaard, CIP, LAWGEF, February 10, 2016
Our series of posts in the coming days will lay out El Salvador’s current security situation and provide recommendations for U.S. policy:

•   En el país más violento del mundo cada día se registran 30 nuevas armas
Metzi Rosales Martel, El Faro, 24 de febrero de 2016
“Entre 2010 y 2015 los salvadoreños estuvieron registrando armas de fuego a un ritmo de 11 mil por año. Esto supone 30 nuevas armas registradas cada día en un país en el que la gran mayoría de homicidios se comete con armas de fuego. En un mercado que en 2014 alcanzó ventas por casi 2 millones de dólares, cuatro empresas acaparan las importaciones.”

•   El Salvador Sees Increase in Violence Between Gang and Security Forces Say Police Chief
Jennifer Kennedy, Latin Correspondent, February 19, 2016
“El Salvador has witnessed nearly 100 gun fights between gangs and the country’s security forces since the start of year. As reported by El Mundo last week, director of the country’s national police, Howard Cotto, said that the number of gun fights and the total number of people killed during the conflicts have both increased compared to the same period last year, when there were about two gun fights per day.”

•   Biden pide a CA luchar contra migración ilegal
El Universal, 25 de febrero de 2016
“El vicepresidente de Estados Unidos, Joe Biden, instó ayer en Washington a los presidentes centroamericanos a hacer más contra la corrupción y la inmigración ilegal para poder seguir contando con el apoyo del Congreso estadounidense a su Plan de la Alianza para la prosperidad en el Triángulo del Norte.”

•   Central Americans May Be Ready for Their Own Arab Spring
Danielle Renwick, Council on Foreign Relations, Defense One, February 23, 2016
“[Recent] developments in Guatemala and Honduras have spurred talk of a ‘Central American Spring’ as protesters in both countries have come out in unprecedented numbers to denounce corruption and demand greater accountability from their leaders.”

•   Hope Fading for Guatemalan Spring
Ricardo Barrientos, AULA Blog, February 22, 2016
“Guatemalans managed a major political crisis in 2015 in an exemplary way: massive citizen demonstrations against authorities accused of corruption lasted four months without a single incident of violence.  Acceptably free and fair elections took place just three days after disgraced President Pérez Molina resigned, and a transition government was formed as mandated by the Constitution . . . Since Morales took office, however, serious mistakes have caused confidence to dim.”

•   A Glimmer of Hope in Central America
Eric L. Olson, Wilson Center, February 24, 2016
“[In] Guatemala in September 2015, President Pérez Molina’s resignation culminated a five-month movement in which ordinary Guatemalan citizens took to the streets in outrage over a corruption scandal involving a network of corrupt officials in the country’s tax and customs office.”

•   México, en fuerte crisis de derechos humanos: AI
Marcos Muedano, El Universal, 24 de febrero de 2016
“El país enfrenta una crisis de derecho humanos por el aumento de las violaciones, asi como por la falta de apertura del gobierno para reconocer la situación y aceptar las recomendaciones emitidas por organizaciones internacionales, señala Perseo Quiroz, director de Amnistía Internacional en México.”

•   Mexico Weapons Imports Increased 331% since 2011
Quenton King, InSight Crime, February 23, 2016
“Mexico’s arms imports grew by 331 percent over the last five years, compared to 2006-2010, raising more concerns over the government’s reluctance to scale back the militarization of the drug war.”

•   Tie Central America Aid to Anti-Corruption Efforts
Paul Angelo, The Hill, February 23, 2016
“Over the past five years, the Northern Triangle countries have repeatedly made the top five of the world’s most murderous countries. Before partnering with local security forces to meet these challenges, however, U.S. policymakers would be wise to condition aid on the willingness of regional governments to investigate and prosecute corrupt officers and then enact long-needed institutional reforms.”

Mexican Enforcement

•   Los Grupos Beta, la ayuda humanitaria de México en la que ya no confían los migrantes
Manu Ureste, Animal Político, 17 de febrero de 2016
“Los migrantes centroamericanos ya no confían en los Grupos Beta, la unidad creada en 1990 por el Instituto Nacional de Migración (INM) cuya única función es salvaguardar los derechos humanos de los migrantes y su integridad física, proporcionándoles en el trayecto hacia la frontera con Estados Unidos agua, alimento y atención sanitaria, sin que por ninguna circunstancia puedan realizar detenciones.”

•   Un primer paso hacia la justicia para víctimas migrantes
Jose Knippen, Sin Embargo, February 1, 2016
“El pasado 18 de diciembre de 2015 se publicó en el Diario Oficial de la Federación el acuerdo por el cual se crea la Unidad de Investigación de Delitos para Personas Migrantes y el Mecanismo de Apoyo Exterior Mexicano de Búsqueda e Investigación. Dicha Unidad, adscrita a la Subprocuraduría de Derechos Humanos, facilitará el acceso a la justicia a las personas migrantes y a sus familias, realizará la búsqueda de migrantes desaparecidos, investigará delitos y coordinará acciones para reparar el daño.”

•   Miles de escoltas en México trabajan sin ley nacional y sin respetar convenios
Arturo Angel, Animal Político, 22 de febrero de 2016
“Así trabajan miles de escoltas y guardias de seguridad privada en el país: sin un padrón confiable que regule cuántos hay y quiénes son, sin un sistema homologado de reclutamiento o capacitación, sin reglas que a nivel nacional delimiten claramente su funcionamiento, con convenios que se firman pero que luego no se aplican, y sin un proceso ordenado de control de confianza y de seguimiento de los resultados.”

U.S. Enforcement

•   Immigration News: New House Bill Would Grant Fair Due Process to Immigrant Children
Michael Ortega, Latin Post, February 25, 2016
“On Friday, 54 House Democrats introduced the ‘Fair Day in Court for Kids Act,’ a bill aimed at protecting children and other vulnerable individuals during immigration court proceedings by guaranteeing legal counsel access, case management services and legal orientation programs.”

•   Why A Single Question Decides The Fates Of Central American Migrants
Eyder Peralta, NPR, February 25, 2016
“He applied for asylum and, like many of the others, he says he fled persecution from gang members in El Salvador….It puts him smack in the middle of a debate fraught with politics and argued in a system that has struggled to find an answer to what seems like a simple question: When is a migrant a refugee?”

•   LAWGEF Welcomes Guidelines for the Protection of Migrant Rights in U.S.-Mexico Repatriation Agreements
Daniella Burgi-Palomino, LAWG, February 24, 2016
“These new repatriation agreements are long-awaited policies for the protection of migrant rights along the U.S.-Mexico border. We applaud the inclusion of guidelines to ensure the safety of vulnerable migrants in their return to Mexico and urge the implementing agencies to do everything they can to adhere to them immediately.”

•   Obama Administration Rebukes Sanctuary Cities
Josh Gerstein, Politico, February 24, 2016
“Under the new policy, the federal Bureau of Prisons will put prisoners finishing their sentences into immigration custody by default when immigration authorities seek deportation, even if local or state officials want the immigrant for prosecution or to finish a state or local sentence.”

•   Alarma por nuevas redadas de inmigrantes en Carolina del Norte
Jorge Cancino, Univision.com, 19 de febrero de 2016
“‘Los arrestos siguen ocurriendo’, dijo a Univision Noticias José Hernández París, director de la Coalición Latinoamericana de Carolina del Norte. ’En general buscan a migrantes centroamericanos que llegaron al país en busca de asilo’.”

•   Advocacy Groups Blame U.S. for Immigration Detention Deaths
AP, CBS, February 25, 2015
“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has for years provided inadequate medical care at its detention facilities, leading to in-custody deaths, according to a report by a coalition of advocacy groups.”

•   U.S. Refugee Agency Put Central American Kids at Risk, GAO Report Says
Abbie VanSickle, The Washington Post, February 22, 2016
“The government agency tasked with placing thousands of Central American children into communities while they await immigration court decisions has no system for tracking the children, does not keep complete case files and has allowed contractors to operate with little oversight, according to a report released Monday by the Government Accountability Office.”

•   EE.UU. y México acuerdan programa de repatriación ordenada de mexicanos
EFE, Yahoo Noticias, 23 de febrero de 2016
“Los gobiernos de Estados Unidos y México firmaron hoy un programa de repatriación “digna, segura y ordenada” de mexicanos con el fin de mejorar los procesos de deportación e incrementar la seguridad de las personas.”

•   Catorce activistas arrestados frente a Casa Blanca tras protesta contra redadas
Maria Peña, La Opinión, 23 de febrero de 2016
“Catorce activistas de la comunidad inmigrantes fueron arrestados este martes frente a la Casa Blanca durante un acto de desobediencia civil contra las redadas y deportaciones, en víspera del encuentro privado entre el vicepresidente, Joe Biden, y los presidentes de El Salvador, Guatemala y Honduras.”

•   Migrant Detention Center Operating Without License
Latin American Herald Tribune, February 23, 2016
“A facility in Pennsylvania that is one of only three immigrant detention centers in the entire U.S. designed to house families and children is operating starting Monday with an expired license.”

•   Dejará de funcionar albergue temporal de niños migrantes en Nuevo México
EFE, La Opinión, 24 de febrero de 2016
“El Departamento de Salud y Servicios Humanos (HSS) indicó en declaraciones que debido a la reciente reducción en el cruce de menores centroamericanos indocumentados en la frontera con México, el albergue temporal, que tiene una capacidad hasta para 700 menores, dejará de ser operativo a partir del próximo 26 de febrero.”

•   Diez cambios en la migración mexicana que te sorprenderán
Gardenia Mendoza, La Opinión, 23 de febrero de 2016
“En la frontera norte de México hay ‘cambios históricos’, dice un estudio que encabezan Melissa Ley y Jesús Peña, dos investigadores del Colegio de la Frontera Norte con base en una encuesta que la institución realiza periódicamente (Emif) . Y estos cambios, afirma, marcan una nueva etapa tanto para México como para Estados Unidos.”

•  [Spanish] Deportación Inc: La industria del miedo
[English]
Deporation Inc: The Industry of Fear
Gerardo Reyes, Univision, febrero de 2016
“La retórica ha demostrado ser muy efectiva en materia política y de negocios….Pero el negocio del miedo ha multiplicado también las ganancias de toda una industria que se lucra del control de la inmigración: empresas de seguridad y defensa fronteriza, centros privados de detención, proveedores de fianzas y vendedores de grilletes electrónicos, abogados de inmigración y empresas aéreas de chárter que deportan a los indocumentados.”

•   Regresar a su país podría significar la muerte para miles de jóvenes inmigrantes (video)
Univision, 23 de febrero de 2016
“Univision logró entrar en un centro de detención de migrantes en Georgia. Dijeron algunos jóvenes detenidos que regresar a su país de origen puede significar que mueran por el peligro de que huyeron.”

New Reports and Resources

•   Following Senate Hearing, Policy Experts, Advocates Discuss Treatment of Unaccompanied Central American Children
Kids in Need of Defense, February 24, 2016
“Following a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the issue, policy experts gathered today to discuss the current state of play of the humanitarian crisis brewing in Central America and outline steps the U.S. can and should take to ensure due process protections for those seeking asylum, as well as to address the root causes of the instability causing them to flee.”
Listen to a recording of the call here.

•   Fatal Neglect: How ICE Ignores Deaths in Detention;
Negligencia Mortal: El ICE pasa por alto las muertes en el sistema de detención

National Immigration Justice Center, ACLU, Detention Watch Network, February 2016
“Egregious violations of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) medical care standards played a prominent role in eight in-custody deaths from 2010 to 2012.”

•   Unaccompanied Children: HHS Can Take Further Actions to Monitor Their Care
U.S. Government Accountability Office, February 5, 2016
“This report examines (1) ORR’s [Office of Refugee Resettlement] response to the increase in unaccompanied children, (2) how ORR cares for children in its custody and monitors their care, (3) how ORR identifies and screens sponsors for children, and (4) what is known about services children receive after they leave ORR custody.”

•   The Blair House Communique: Joint Communique Of The Presidents Of El Salvador, Guatemala, And Honduras, And The Vice President Of The United States Of America In Relation To The Plan Of The Alliance For Prosperity In The Northern Triangle
White House Office of the Press Secretary, February 24, 2016
“The presidents of the Northern Triangle and Vice President Biden recognized the concrete advances under the Plan of the Alliance for Prosperity and the U.S. Strategy for Engagement in Central America; agreed to collaborate on a comprehensive plan of action for 2016.”

•  [English] Conclusions and Recommendations Made by the IACHR and its Office of the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression on the Situation Over the Right to Freedom of Expression in Honduras;
[Spanish] Conclusiones y recomendaciones realizadas por la CIDH y su Relatoría Especial sobre la situación del derecho a la libertad de expresión en Honduras
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, February 23, 2016
“According to official figures, between 2003 and 2014, 50 journalists and media workers were killed in Honduras. Most of these crimes remain unpunished, preventing to determine if there is a connection with the victims’ informative work and has hindered the identification and conviction of material perpetrators and masterminds.”

•   Deferred Action for Unauthorized Immigrant Parents: Analysis of DAPA’s Potential Effects on Families and Children
Randy Capps, et al., Migration Policy Institute, February 2016
“The report finds that more than 10 million people live in households with at least one potentially DAPA-eligible adult, including some 4.3 million children under age 18—an estimated 85 percent of whom are U.S. citizens.”

•  DACA at Year Three: Challenges and Opportunities in Accessing Higher Education and Employment
Robert G. Gonzales, et al., American Immigration Council, February 2016
“For these young people, the opportunities DACA has afforded them have resulted in a renewed hope, more concrete goals, and better performance at school and at work.”

•   Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions
Lisa Christensen Gee, et al., The Institute on Taxation & Economic Policy, February 2016
“The truth is that undocumented immigrants living in the United States pay billions of dollars each year in state and local taxes. Further, these tax contributions would increase significantly if all undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States were granted a pathway to citizenship as part of a comprehensive immigration reform.”

•   Preparing Immigrant Job Seekers to Reach Their Full Potential: Opportunities For Local Workforce Boards Under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act
Kathy Tran, National Immigration Forum, February 22, 2016
“The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) presents new requirements and opportunities for workforce leaders in states, regions, and communities to prepare job seekers, including immigrants, to meet the needs of businesses and to reach their potential.”

P.S. Do you know of someone who might be interested in receiving the Migrant News Brief? Forward this e-mail and have them sign up here.

*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.