The y flee from poverty, violence and unemployment.
The corona pandemic is rapidly driving up unemployment in the region. Two hurricanes hit Central America at the end of last year, causing devastating devastation.
Biden’s first official acts give hope
The new government in the White House is a signal to many people about these circumstances. “A new pull factor,” says Jessica Bolter of the Migration Policy Institute in Washington. As an analyst, Bolter focuses on migration movements on the US border with Mexico, asylum issues in the United States and migration policy in Latin America.
The change of government in the United States will bring fundamental changes in the framework of migration policy, which Bolter will accompany in her research in the future.
US President Biden has already announced that he will be introducing a broad overhaul of immigration laws into Congress. On his first day in office, Bolter lists, he already has a decree
- caused a break in the expansion of the wall on the southern border of the USA,
the entry stop for people from predominantly Islamic countries lifted,
started decriminalizing undocumented people who were to be arrested and deported under Trump,
Deportations suspended for a hundred days and a review of the deportation notices initiated,
strengthened the DACA program, which supports young people who came to the USA illegally as children from deportation and gives them work permits,
halted the Remain in Mexico program that sent migrants back to Mexico to await their asylum hearing.
What does that mean now? Will the chaotic images of the past few years, when thousands of migrants jam on the southern border of the United States, be repeated?
A report by the US Senate, quoted by the Washington Post, explains the consequences of this policy: Since November 2019, the Trump administration has deported 945 asylum seekers, mainly from El Salvador and Honduras, to Guatemala. Only 34 of them have applied for asylum in the country – and none of them has yet been granted asylum.
Guatemala, shaken by gang violence, is – according to the US Embassy in Guatemala – one of the most dangerous countries in the world. Like Honduras and El Salvador, where the third-country agreements should also apply, Guatemala has not even rudimentarily developed an asylum system.
The country is completely overwhelmed with the fulfillment of the agreement.
US immigration policy doesn’t change overnight
The Biden government has already announced that it will suspend Trump’s asylum agreements with third countries and accept asylum applications again. However, she warned the migrants not to travel any further: US immigration policy would not change overnight. “
The rule that someone who crosses the border illegally will be deported and not given access to asylum will remain in place for the time being,” says expert Jessica Bolter. Biden had communicated that his government would need “at least the next six months” to shape a “more humane asylum policy”.
The re are already approaches to set up asylum centers in these countries so that those seeking protection can submit their applications locally. Biden has also announced that it will focus on the causes of flight in the Central American states.
The trek from Honduras with 3,000 migrants was broken up by security forces in Guatemala at the beginning of the week. According to observers, some groups are said to continue moving towards Mexico. Thousands, however, have been stopped and some have been sent back to Honduras. Guatemala, which also justified its hard-handed policy with the risk of infection in the pandemic, continues to perform the role as a bouncer assigned by Trump after he has left the White House.
The Biden government will certainly see regional partners more as partners in the future, whereas Trump only shaped his migration policy through pressure,” says Bolter.
Migrants will move towards the USA in greater numbers
Bolter expects that the people will now head back to the USA in greater numbers. She considers it less likely that tens of thousands will again be jammed in slum camps at the border, as was the case under Trump. Trump had consciously produced the misery in line with his political agenda. »
The new government will approach the matter pragmatically and work with partners, NGOs and migrant hostels on the border. It will equip the key centers at the border in order to be able to deal adequately with parents and children so that the chaotic scenes from the past do not repeat themselves. ”
The re is a good chance that there will be less trauma in the future among migrant families who are striving for a decent life in the USA.
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