There was an increase in detention of family units last year.
Lorena Mena of Ecuador, Mexico, where she leads the organization, says the figures for Ecuadorians crossing the border between Mexico and the United States are alarming. Mobile Continent, Specializes in research and analysis of immigration events, which looked at how statistics have been growing since 2019 due to a variety of factors.
When did the number of Ecuadorians begin to increase?
It started in mid-2019 … especially in Ciudad Juarez where a certain number of Ecuadorians were found to be trapped. Colleagues from the city working on the issue began to find that some of the asylum seekers were from Ecuador. This has always been the case before the Ecuadorians crossed, but not in the amounts they started giving in mid-2019. It is suspected that they are coming a little. Easy because they don’t need a visa to enter Mexico, but that’s not what the authorities said. It doesn’t seem that big.
What figures do you have now?
I surveyed people who were in the program of asylum seekers in the Mexican territory, and between 2019 and September 2020, I found that Ecuadorians were in fifth place (nationally) with 5,249 under this program. We waited for the appointment of American immigration judges, which caught our attention. Nearly three thousand people were waiting to go to trial court in El Paso, Texas, where his motives were that if he was eligible for asylum or he was an economic immigrant, those people did not qualify because his life was not in danger (…). Added to this is the fact that the United States closed the land border when the epidemic struck. All tests and appointments were discontinued. People have been confused for a year and a half.
What set the alarm for Ecuadorians?
The United States and Mexico are panicked by the numbers crossing the border and detained by U.S. border guards. These figures (Mexican) authorities seem to have taken into account the re-establishment of the visa. During the fiscal year 2021 — from October 2020 to September 2021 — through the cut-offs, a total of 70,746 Ecuadorians were spotted at various locations along the border, according to statistics on the population. Compared to the previous financial year it was 11,861, which is a lot higher from one year to the next.
How and where do these people cross?
In the previous fiscal year, the majority were single adults, but if we review fiscal year 2021 statistics, the number of isolated individuals is 62%, but it is much higher in family units — relatives when they detain you – 34%, and minors 2,908 (4%) without a partner. ). More than 32,000 people have been arrested in Texas. New Mexico and Arizona continue.
Do you have any assumptions about the factors that led to the increase from 2019?
The visa issue may have made it a little easier to go north. I’m not saying it’s easy with this. This brings you closer, but reaching and crossing the northern border is already another problem and you run a lot of risks. The second thing is what we call pushing factors, i.e., what happens in the countries of origin. For Central Americans, this is the cause of a much stronger violent problem, but what I see in the case of Ecuador was that the epidemic effect was a major stimulus to this increase (…), it seems that because it has a direct relationship, the economic situation in the country is much more complicated and the unemployment rate has risen … Family heads and those who were the source of the house may also have died. They are continuous things when you see that people are in a very complicated situation and they have no choice but to leave. By reviewing the historical data, media and documents of the authorities, the largest number of people leaving Ecuador are from the southern Sierra region, the traditional area where Ecuadorians have been migrating to the United States since the 70s. Integrated networks of people with acquaintances or relatives who can provide an introductory network in the United States. But entering Mexico easily without a visa requires people from other parts of the country as well.
What actions are recommended in this situation?
At the policy level (between Mexico and the United States) they take this time, trying to control or restrict flows. This is not the right move, because it is not going to stop them … If people rush out, they will reach another point on the Mediterranean and find a way out, even if they have to follow Mexico. Irregular paths. For Ecuador, it is best to find a way to prevent people from leaving by creating an environment that prevents this from happening. But when it is a process that takes a long time it is very complicated … (perhaps) financial incentives, jobs can be closed by people in this awkward situation. Salary issue is one of the issues they point out when you interview people who want to relocate. The age factor is also coming … Unlike in the United States, there are many people over the age of 50 who say they have no chance in Ecuador. (I)
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