Crisis at the Border
More than 60,000 Central American asylum seekers have been turned away from the US and forced to wait in dangerous conditions in Mexico until their court dates because of a recent immigration rule. This has resulted in numerous spontaneous settlements on the US/Mexico border. The largest of these camps is home to approximately 2,500 asylum-seekers, including numerous children, in Matamoros, Mexico. Inhabitants live with insufficient shelter, sanitation, food, and water and suffer from disease and ongoing violence from local cartels, all of which threatens the development and well-being of the youngest and most vulnerable migrants. (See our new report on experiences of women and children in the camp.)
The COVID-19 pandemic further threatens this population as the unsanitary environment, close living quarters, and poor underlying health conditions makes the camp ripe for disease transmission. And the limited response capacity makes containing the virus nearly impossible. Fears of COVID transmission have led to more draconian measures at the border and threats of deportation.
Project Adelante aims to gather information, raise awareness, and contribute to solutions to this crisis on the border, especially impacts on children. To this end, we focus on witness and storytelling, human rights and legal support, and solutions for children to thrive.
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