Migrant caravan: exodus of the vulnerable | Article

Author: Ana Lorena Delgadillo Perez

At the end of the year, while many of us are wondering how we will mark the final days of 2023, nearly 8,000 migrants are crossing into Mexico in what they call an “exodus out of poverty.” This outcome is a direct result of the enormous lack of protection they face in the face of violence, insecurity, lack of opportunity and, in many cases, lack of the rule of law.

Some of the countries with the highest migration rates, such as Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Haiti, face similar problems. According to The World Bankpoverty in Guatemala and Honduras exceed 50%. Bye. Honduras continues to be one of the poorest and most unequal countries in the region.. IN Nicaragua Poverty conditions are worsening with low level of human capital, infrastructure deficit, weak institutional and business environment, natural disasters and the brutal political repression of recent years. El Salvador, for its part, remains above pre-pandemic levels of extreme poverty.

When Cuba is of grave concern due to the multifaceted crisis the island is experiencing, particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the tourism industry, to which is added chronic and widespread shortages of essential productsincluding food and medicine, and the harsh Cuban political system they created, according to WOLA (Washington Office for Latin America), migration of Cubans to the United States greater than at any time since the Cuban Revolution, which reached approximately 4% of Cuba’s total population in fiscal years 2022 and 2023.

IN In Haiti, more than 50% of the population suffers from hunger, and according to the World Bank, almost 90% of Haitians live below the poverty line. and almost a third of them live in extreme poverty. In Venezuela, the country with the largest refugee crisis in the entire hemisphere, with more than 7.7 million Venezuelans living outside its borders, Food purchases have fallen sharply, increasing inequalities in food quality and quantity.; To 93.3% of household income is not enough to live on, and poverty is considered structural after 3 continuous years of crisis (Study of living conditions in VenezuelaEnkovi, 2022).

In addition to poverty, some of these countries face conditions of violence, lack of governance, insecurity, institutional weakness or political crises. For example, Haiti is besieged by armed groups and gangs (more than 300), which implies severe conditions of violence, including sexual violence, and insecurity (Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian AffairsUKHA).

In Guatemala, more than 30 justice workers and human rights defenders fighting corruption and human rights have been forced into exile due to political persecution. Despite Bernardo Arevalo’s victory in the elections, the situation is becoming difficult due to illegal obstacles imposed by various players to prevent him from coming to power.

To this we must add the attacks that have occurred in the region due to the effects of climate change and the COVID 19 pandemic, and in the case of Haiti, the cholera epidemic in 2022. It is estimated that due to climate change 17 million people could be forced to leave their homes and more seriously, it is reported that Almost 5.8 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean will fall into extreme poverty by 2030 due to lack of drinking water, increased exposure to excessive heat and flooding.. (World Bank Latin America and the Caribbean: Overview).

People migrate because of the need to have a decent life or to survive, there can be no doubt about that. Countries’ responses to this reality must be diverse, inclusive, regional in nature and humanitarian in nature. It is difficult to think that only investment in the economy and sources of jobs will bring positive results so that people will decide to stay and live in their countries, when it is clear that minimum conditions of governance and security are necessary to be able to enjoy the goods and services to which we all have access right. In many of these countries, having an income or decent living conditions is a risk, as sex-harvesting, extortion, kidnapping and robbery are increasingly common in the region.

Immigration agreements made by the United States in the region have failed. People will continue to migrate because their survival depends on it.

Since the beginning of this year, about 94 civil society organizations in the region, in response to the Los Angeles Declaration on Migration and Protection, made several recommendations to countries: respect and guarantee the right to asylum (the principle of non-refoulement and access to territory); create and expand additional routes for the movement of people to reduce migration risks; fight crime and impunity for crimes committed against migrants and asylum seekers; renew implementation of the UN Refugee Agency’s 10-point Action Plan; intervene in the lives of marginalized communities, focusing on economic security and resilience to climate and insecurity, and create Migration policy goes hand in hand with the affected populations and the organizations that accompany them.

It is not militarization, detentions and mass deportations that will bring results. It is necessary to develop safe migration routes at different stages, as well as regularization policies. Many of the problems facing countries of origin are caused by humanity as a whole, and it is only through human vision that we can begin to find true ways to respond and thereby avoid a mass exodus of poverty and lack of protection.

Source: Aristegui Noticias