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Migration News Brief for September 23, 2022

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Date: Sep 23, 2022

Welcome to LAWG’s Migration News Brief, a compilation of recent top articles and reports related to issues of U.S. immigration and enforcement policy and migration from Central America and Mexico.


Spotlight

Temporary Protected Status for Immigrants from Central America
TPS for Central America, September 15 2022
“Designating Guatemala and redesignating TPS for Honduras, El Salvador, and Nicaragua fits squarely within the authority of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of State… The urgency of granting a new designation for current TPS beneficiaries from Nicaragua, Honduras, and El Salvador in the United States cannot be overstated.” 

US Enforcement

Border apprehensions exceed 2 million this year: Enforcement increases as GOP buses migrants elsewhere
Quinn Owen, CBS News, September 19, 2022
“U.S. Border Patrol’s apprehensions of migrants have exceeded 2 million so far this fiscal year, including people who turn themselves into authorities between land ports of entry, according to agency data. With more than a month still left in the fiscal year, the number of apprehensions marks a significant increase from 2021. That fiscal year, authorities apprehended migrants 1.66 million times and encountered migrants nearly 2 million times — in what was then a new record.”

DeSantis news: Martha’s Vineyard migrant survived torture in Mexico as Delaware flight ‘scam’ revealed
Alex Woodwar, Shweta Sharma,  John Bowden, The Independent, September 23 2022
“Caseworkers from housing organisations are helping them with longer-term housing solutions, and immigration attorneys also are assisting with their asylum cases and navigating their legal status and resource while in the US. ‘The people who are there are in good spirits and good health and are deeply appreciative,’ he said. Several people have moved out of the shelter and headed to New York City, among other destinations, where they have contacts.”

DeSantis news – live: Florida governor polls surge despite class action suit over migrant flights
Alex Woodwar, Shweta Sharma,  John Bowden, The Independent, September 21 2022
“Local officials as well as the governor of California have called for Mr DeSantis in particular to be criminally investigated for the flights, which reportedly relied on false claims of aid in official-looking to entice the migrants to board them and involved migrants who never set foot in Florida to begin with.

After Being Deported by U.S., Walter Cruz-Zavala Disappeared in Notorious Salvadoran Crackdown
Ryan Devereaux and John Washington, The Intercept, September 20 2022
“Just over a year had passed since Cruz-Zavala accepted his deportation from the United States… The undocumented Cruz-Zavala was twice victorious in his immigration case, but U.S. authorities, taking advantage of their extraordinary power and discretion, had kept him locked up for nearly four years…When Cruz-Zavala was transferred from Mariona to Izalco, a prison about an hour from San Salvador, the family had no word on his whereabouts for weeks. ‘It’s almost like he was dead.’”

Presidenta Xiomara Castro se reúne con comunidad migrante y director de la FAO en Nueva York
Redacción, Confidencial HN, 20 de septiembre de 2022
Durante la reunión se abordaron diferentes temas, específicamente, el apoyo del Gobierno de Honduras para la comunidad migrante en los Estados Unidos. De igual forma, solicitaron a la mandataria hondureña pedir una nueva extensión del TPS para los más 80 mil compatriotas beneficiados con este estatus y solicitar uno nuevo para los afectados por los huracanes Eta y Iota”. 

Border Wall Construction Resumes Under President Joe Biden
Ryan Devereaux, The Intercept, September 18 2022
“Six days after Traphagen’s visit, U.S. Customs and Border Protection confirmed that work on the border wall that began under Trump is revving back up under Biden. In an online presentation Wednesday, CBP — the largest division of the Department of Homeland Security and home to the Border Patrol — detailed plans to address environmental damage brought on by the former president’s signature campaign promise and confirmed that the wall will remain a permanent fixture of the Southwest for generations to come.”

‘They enriched us.’ Migrants’ 44-hour visit leaves indelible mark on Martha’s Vineyard
Ray Sanchez, CNN, September 18 2022 
“‘The heartbreaking part is seeing these beautiful young ladies become desensitized,” said her husband, Larkin Stallings, 66, an Oak Bluffs bar owner who sits on the nonprofit’s board. ‘For them, they just flip and show you a picture.’ ‘The year round community is very strong because you are kind of isolated here — whether it’s the ferry or the bad weather, you’re stuck here,’ he said. ‘We’re used to helping each other. We’re used to dealing with people in need and we’re super happy — like they enriched us, we’re happy to help them on their journey.’”

Almost a dozen U.S. ambassadors to Latin America and the Caribbean are still not in place
Carmen Sesin, NBC News, September 16 2022
“Finding candidates has become more difficult over the years because both the vetting and the confirmation processes have become more complex, and could become tedious and frustrating for the nominees. With Biden’s nominations to the region, partisan politics in Congress and what some have described as the administration foot-dragging have also complicated the confirmation process, even while they were still in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.”

As GOP governors escalate their practice of sending migrants across the country, Chicago’s arrivals recount their journeys
Laura Rodríguez, Chicago Tribune, September 16 2022
“For the first time since fleeing their beloved Venezuela in early June, three generations of Elizabeth Navarro’s family finally reunited in the Chicago area this month after crossing several borders… The family’s wayward journey to Chicago is not unlike the experiences of thousands of migrants being bused across the country by the governors of Texas and Arizona for political purposes.”

¿Qué pasa con el TPS para Honduras, El Salvador y Nicaragua?
María Luisa Arredondo, The Independent, 15 de  septiembre de 2022
“El TPS fue establecido por el Congreso de Estados Unidos en 1990 para permitir a ciertos inmigrantes vivir y trabajar legalmente en el país de manera temporal… Estados Unidos ha concedido el TPS a más de 400 mil extranjeros originarios de Afganistán, Birmania, El Salvador, Haití, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua, Sudán, Somalia, Sudán del Sur, Siria, Ucrania, Venezuela y Yemen”.

Miles de migrantes siguen varados en la frontera entre México y Estados Unidos por el Título 42
María Luisa Arredond, The Independent,  14 de septiembre de 2022
“La administración Trump impuso el Título 42 al inicio de la pandemia, cuando no había vacunas ni tratamientos para detener las infecciones. Como resultado de ello, unas 55 mil personas, según estimaciones de la organización Strauss Center, han quedado varadas en la frontera, donde viven al aire libre en condiciones deplorables o en campamentos sin suficientes recursos para satisfacer sus necesidades básicas. Muchos de ellos están expuestos también al crimen organizado que se aprovecha de su vulnerabilidad para extorsionarlos, secuestrarlos o incluso asesinarlos”. 

“Reasignación y extensión del TPS “: lo que piden inmigrantes centroamericanos del sur de Florida
Univision, 14 de septiembre de 2022 
“Una manifestación en el Servicio de Inmigración y Control de Aduanas del sur de Florida, pidió esta mañana a la administración Biden, la reasignación y extensión del TPS para personas de El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua y Guatemala. Argumentan que necesitan la protección por la situación de sus países”.

Hijos de indocumentados condicionan voto en 2022: exigen a candidatos compromiso migratorio
Jesús García, La Opinión,  12 de  septiembre de  2022
““Mis padres no tienen derecho a votar, así que este noviembre, mi voto es la voz de mi familia”, dijo Claudia Elizabeth Jorge Benitez, de California, cuyos padres son beneficiarios del TPS. “Mi voto será para los líderes que no dejen a las comunidades como la mía en el abandono”.

México Enforcement

La salud de los inmigrantes se quiebra, y empeora, mientras esperan en refugios fronterizos
Renuka Rayasam, Chicago Tribune, 14 de septiembre de 2022
“El albergue Leona Vicario ha sufrido brotes de varicela y sarampión desde su apertura en 2019. Sigue siendo considerado uno de los mejores refugios porque el gobierno mexicano lo administra. Los refugios privados, y sin fines de lucro, operan con poca supervisión, y su calidad varía. Algunos migrantes duermen en la calle. En general, las condiciones en que viven hacen que las personas enfermen, y la atención médica es limitada, señaló Gabriela Muñoz, gestora del Centro de Defensa del Inmigrante Las Américas, en Juárez”. 

As numbers rise, the hardships of migration through Mexico multiply
Lillian Perlmutter, The New Humanitarian, September 21 2022 
“Tapachula, a town on the Mexico-Guatemala border known for its stifling heat, has earned the nickname of a ‘migrant prison’…nder President Joe Biden, the United States has been quietly pressing Mexico to accept more migrants from Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela… According to COMAR, the Mexican government’s asylum department, 67,000 people applied for refugee status between January and July this year. That is over four times the 16,000 people who applied during the same period last year.”

Detienen a migrantes cubanos en tránsito irregular por México
Redacción, Cibercuba, 12 de septiembre de 2022
“Al menos 285 migrantes, incluidos 19 menores de edad, de Cuba, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Ecuador, Nicaragua y Venezuela fueron retenidos por agentes de la Secretaría de Seguridad Pública estatal… Este año han solicitado refugio en México 12,898 cubanos, según estadísticas oficiales mexicanas, que sitúan a Cuba como el segundo país en número de solicitantes después de Honduras”. 

Honduras encabeza peticiones de refugio en México
Viena Hernández, Criterio.hn, 21 de septiembre de 2022
“El observatorio de Migraciones de Fundación Eléutera compartió que México ha recibido solo en agosto 11 mil 581 solicitudes de refugio de hondureños, de estas 5 mil 956 son de menores de edad. De tal forma, resaltaron que en comparación con el año pasado las peticiones han aumentado en un 21.61%”. 

Root Causes

US humanitarian program for Central American children is slow moving under Biden, report finds
Geneva Sands, CNN, September 21 2022
“A humanitarian program aimed at helping Central American children reunite with family members in the United States has gotten off to a slow start under the Biden administration despite an attempt to revive the program from its Trump-era cancellation, according to a new report from the International Refugee Assistance Project… Children in Central America are not permitted to have an attorney present in their interviews with US Citizenship and Immigration Officers, which IRAP believes can lead to unfair outcomes.”

«Queremos vivir en paz, no sigan tratando de desestabilizar Honduras o escoger con quiénes debemos relacionarnos»: Presidenta Xiomara Castro en 77ª Asamblea de la ONU
Confidencial HN, 20 de septiembre de 2022
“Haciendo referencia a los gobiernos anteriores y los efectos sobre Honduras de los huracanes Eta y Iota, la presidenta Xiomara Castro disertó este martes ante la 77ª Asamblea General de la Organización de Naciones Unidas (ONU)… Posterior a su discurso, Xiomara Castro se reunirá con una representación de la Cuenta del Milenio y del Alto Comisionado de las Naciones Unidas para los Refugiados (ACNUR).

Ayotzinapa: Sí fue el Estado
Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez, Centro de Derechos Humanos, 20 de septiembre de 2022
“El día 19 de septiembre de 2022 se llevó a cabo una mesa de diálogo “Ayotzinapa: Sí fue el Estado” donde participaron… Las participantes reflexionaron sobre las nociones éticas que hay desde la perspectiva periodística y la necesidad de hacer un llamado a la sociedad a acompañar a las familias en esta lucha”.

Al buscar la reelección, Bukele recrea la vieja historia del caudillo latinoamericano
Ricardo Valencia, The Washington Post, 19 de septiembre de 2022 
“El siguiente paso de esa historia es su reelección en 2024, la cual buscará según un anuncio que hizo la semana pasada, aunque sabe que es inconstitucional… na reelección inconstitucional puede hacer peligrar el reconocimiento internacional. Bukele lo sabe, por eso la tragicomedia de El Salvador la escribe con fanáticos y mercenarios”. 

Hondureños a protestar en Washington y esperan que presidenta Castro abogue por un nuevo TPS
Proceso Digital, 18 de septiembre de 2022
“Cientos de hondureños regresan a las calles de Washington este lunes en la sexta mega marcha para solicitar un nuevo Estatus de Protección Temporal (TPS) que conceda el beneficio migratorio a los connacionales afectados por los huracanes Eta e Iota, dicha marcha coincide con la Asamblea General de la Organización de las Naciones Unidas (ONU), donde estará presente la presidenta Xiomara Castro, por lo que se espera abogue por los migrantes”.

The U.S. Vowed to Defend Central American Democracy. Autocrats Had Other Plans.
Anatoly Kurmanaev and Jody García, NYT, September 17 2022
“But a year later, Central America has emerged as one of the Biden administration’s biggest foreign policy setbacks. Many nations have slid deeper into authoritarianism and poverty and sent record numbers of migrants to the U.S. southern border, leaving the region’s fragile democracies in the worst state since the Cold War, according to former U.S. diplomats and civil society leaders.”

David Morales: ‘There is a Deliberate Policy to Violate Human Rights”
Héctor Silva Avalos, WOLA, September 16, 2022 
“David Morales, the lawyer who will receive WOLA’s Human Rights Award this year in Washington, D.C., has been denouncing abuses in El Salvador for decades… However, obstacles returned with Nayib Bukele’s presidency…In a country like El Salvador, where the government has been silencing anyone seen as critical, the voice of David Morales is one of those that remains unwavering.”

‘The Indigenous Women of Guatemala had the Courage to Break the Silence’
Josefina Salomón and Sergio Ortiz Borboll, WOLA, 16 September 2022“Nearly six years later, in January 2022, five Maya Achi indigenous women secured the conviction of five former paramilitaries for the sexual violence they committed in the municipality Rabinal, also in the early 1980s.”

Action Alerts, and Resources

“USA: “They do not treat us like people”: Race and migration-related torture and other ill-treatment of Haitians seeking safety in the USA” 
Amnesty International, September 22, 2022
“The report has two main findings: Firstly, mass or collective expulsions by the US authorities of Haitian asylum seekers under Title 42 are just a new chapter in a long history of detention, exclusion, and deterrence of Haitians seeking safety in the USA, rooted in systemic anti-Black discrimination. Secondly, with the acquiescence of US authorities, the Haitians interviewed for this research – and possibly many others – have faced arbitrary detention, and in some cases torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading.”

Children and Families Must Have Access to Asylum: Threats to Asylum are Threats to Children’s Safety
Children Thrive Action Network, September 22 2022
“Yet since 2020, the Department of Homeland Security has used Title 42 to expel more than 1.7 million people—many of them asylum seekers—to Mexico or their home countries. Seeking asylum has become nearly impossible, in contravention to U.S. law, international obligations, and our national values.”

Policy Brief Remain in Mexico Is Alive and Well: Current Disenrollment Process Harms Vulnerable Asylum Seekers
National Immigration Law Center, September 20 2022 
“Government guidance currently requires most individuals enrolled in RMX to wait until the date of their immigration court hearing to disenroll… Unrepresented individuals in RMX are being forced to proceed with individual merits hearings, resulting in unjust removal orders… [and] Migrants in the RMX program are still required to remain in Mexico despite the termination memorandum being in effect.”

Educational Connectivity in Complex Areas – A Call to Action to Solve Connectivity Gaps in Latin America
The Dialogue, September 13 2022
“The countries of Latin America face a challenge of strategic importance: to extend significant connectivity for educational purposes throughout the length and breadth of the territory… Ensuring meaningful connectivity for educational purposes requires finding creative and flexible solutions and promoting response packages that extend quality service quickly and economically.”

Recommendations to Fix Erroneous Addresses on Migrant Paperwork
American Immigration Lawyers Association, September 15 2022
“Implementing a nationwide online or telephonic address changes with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)… Listing only the city and state on DHS documents… Prior to issuing an in absentia order, OPLA and EOIR should work together to confirm that an address listed on a hearing notice is not a nonprofit address.”


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

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