Inhumane US and Mexico immigration policies endanger 18,000 people along the border – Mexico

The continuation and expansion of Title 42 — the harmful policy that has allowed the U.S. to quickly deport asylum seekers on the false grounds of protecting public health — is causing a humanitarian crisis along the U.S.-Mexico border, said the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders (MSF). ) on Friday.

Thousands of people are facing extreme weather, lack of shelter and inadequate access to food and water, said MSF, which provides health services and mental health support to affected migrants in Reynosa, Metamoros, Nuevo Laredo and Piedras Negras, and runs programs. along migration routes in Mexico and Central America. In Piedras Negras, MSF teams also witnessed arrests and harassment of migrants.

“In recent days, migrants have faced freezing temperatures, worsening the already difficult conditions for the nearly 18,000 people currently stuck at the northern border,” said Marcos Tamariz, MSF’s deputy head of mission for Mexico and Central America. “The vast majority of people faced these extreme temperatures with nothing more than a blanket, cardboard, plastic or tents.”

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In addition to medical consultations, mental health and social support, MSF donated blankets and hygiene kits at various points along Mexico’s northern border.

“During our consultation, one patient told me that in the camp, the children did not stop crying all night,” said Lourdes Chaballos, MSF’s director of mobile activities in Metamoros. “It was very cold and they couldn’t keep warm.” At least 8,000 people sleep outside in Metamoros. “Another told me she thought the trek through the Darien jungle was the cruelest thing she had ever experienced until she had to endure the cold at night under the bridge.”

In recent years, the number of people immigrating to the United States in search of safety and security has reached unprecedented levels. In fiscal year 2022, U.S. border officials apprehended immigrants more than 2.2 million times. About 1 million of those apprehensions led to deportation under Title 42. This policy, first implemented in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, has been abused by both Govt. by both Trump and Biden to effectively shut down routine processing of asylum seekers at the US southern border.

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Although Title 42 was supposed to expire at the end of December, it remains in place following a decision by the US Supreme Court. Just days after the Supreme Court’s order, the Biden administration decided to expand Title 42 and apply it to Haitians, Nicaraguans and Cubans, who had not previously been subject for immediate deportation to Mexico.

At the same time, the US government announced a parole program for these nationalities. This is a limited and discriminatory initiative that cannot adequately replace normal asylum treatment at the border. Expanding safe pathways for immigrants and asylum seekers is essential, but access to safety should not depend on the nationality of those seeking safety. , their relationships with US sponsors, their ability to travel by air or their legal status in a third country.

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While these decisions are made at the highest levels of power, the reality that immigrants face is hardship. MSF staff working on Mexico’s northern border continue to see the suffering caused by this inhumane policy.

“This crisis requires a coordinated response and greater involvement of federal, state and local agencies to address these emergencies,” Tamariz said. “Policies like Title 42 and similar bilateral agreements [put] An extraordinary burden on towns and cities that do not have the necessary resources to deal with crises of this magnitude. The implementation of these decisions endangers the dignity, well-being and safety that people have been looking for since they fled their countries.”


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