Saturday, August 2, 2014

AZMEX I3 1-8-14

AZMEX I3 1 AUG 2014

Note: Take a look at this one also;

Central American immigrants now have a new place to wait for their rides out of Tucson
Posted: Aug 01, 2014 5:35 PM CDT
Updated: Aug 01, 2014 6:04 PM CDT
By Barbara Grijalva - bio | email

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -
Central American Immigrants captured in Arizona still are passing through Tucson, but one part of their journey is changing.

Federal agents still process them, give them orders to appear at an immigration office in the future, then the immigrants are allowed to take a bus to family in the United States.

Starting Friday though, the immigrants were not waiting at the Greyhound Bus Station in Tucson for their rides.

Catholic Community Services, or CCS, is moving, what it calls, the hospitality center to a new, undisclosed location.

CCS Volunteer Coordinator Mike Gutierrez says Greyhound committed to a specific amount of time to provide space at the depot for the immigrants to wait for their buses, but that time has ended and it's time to move.

The new hospitality center is not at CCS offices, but at an undisclosed location.

Gutierrez says that's to give the immigrants, mostly women and children, some peace and quiet after all they've been through, and not because the agency is worried about protests.

"We haven't really seen that in this entire time. We haven't seen those kind of protests show up here. So that hasn't been really part of our concern. I imagine, it's possible, but the community as a whole hasn't really demonstrated that they want to protest this effort," Gutierrez says.

Gutierrez says after the immigrants go through federal processing, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, transfers them. "So ICE will pick them up and will transfer them over to--what was Greyhound--now it's the new location," Gutierrez says.

He says volunteers will give the immigrants the same service they got at the bus station.
"We'll give them some time to relax. We'll give them something to eat. We'll give them a chance to rummage through some clothes and get some clothes if they want to change clothes, diapers, give them a travel bag," Gutierrez says.

Then volunteers take them to the Greyhound station for the next leg of their journey.

Gutierrez says the number of immigrants Catholic Community Services serves has stabilized, averaging about 15 people a day.

Upstairs at CCS, staff and volunteers sort through the diapers, water bottles, snacks and other items our community has donated to help the immigrants who make a stop in Tucson. Gutierrez says the community has been generous. He says donations have even come from California. He says CCS will continue collecting donations for the immigrants at 140 West Speedway.


Note: abandoned by their parents, usually in the U.S. illegally.

Unaccompanied Mexican kids find open arms at Sonora shelter
Unaccompanied minors deported from the United States watch TV at the Camino a Casa shelter in Nogales, Sonora.

Posted: Friday, August 1, 2014 8:20 am
By Murphy Woodhouse
Nogales International

Phone calls from southern Mexico are the only things that have kept Yohana, 14, connected to her mother and all four siblings in Miami, Florida.
For the last eight years, the teenager has been living with her grandmother in Guerrero, one of Mexico's poorest states, while her mother worked in the United States and sent money back home. But two months ago, Yohana set out north with a smuggler her mother hired and a dream shared by many of the unaccompanied minors now straining federal enforcement agencies on the United States' southern border: family reunification.
"I don't know [my mother] in person," she said. "I've got all of my family up there."
After five failed crossing attempts in Reynosa, Tamaulipas and one failed attempt near Nogales, Yohana has not made it to her mother and has instead ended up at a shelter for young, unaccompanied deportees in Nogales, Sonora run by the agency Integral Family Development, or DIF.

The Nogales Placement Center, an ad-hoc facility at the local Border Patrol Station that was used in June and July to process around 5,000 unaccompanied Central American minors caught crossing the border in South Texas, is now empty and mostly out of the headlines. But the Border Patrol is still detaining, processing and deporting undocumented Mexican minors in the Nogales area. And the Nogales, Sonora shelter, Camino a Casa, or Path Home, is providing food, shelter and a number of other services to hundreds of the young deportees annually, as well as a handful of unaccompanied Central American minors.

According to data from Mexico's Foreign Relations Secretariat, 16,016 unaccompanied minors were deported to Mexico in 2013, 4,285 of whom ended up in Nogales, Sonora. Through the end of May this year, 7,847 such migrants have been returned to the country and, through the end of June, Camino a Casa has attended to 629 of them in Nogales, Sonora, according to Maria Isabel Arvizu Lopez, the shelter's coordinator. Since the facility opened in January 2005, nearly 47,000 children have passed through its doors.

Unlike unaccompanied Central American minors apprehended by the Border Patrol, Mexican minors are processed and returned to Mexico quickly, according to Nogales Station public information officers Raymond Bean and Richard Funke. According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection data, of the 57,525 unaccompanied minors apprehended by the Border Patrol between Oct. 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, 43,933 have been from Guatemala, El Salvador or Honduras, and 12,614 have been from Mexico.

"Mexico is our neighbor," Funke said. "It simplifies things."
After the minors are processed by the Border Patrol and turned over to Mexico's National Migration Institute (INM) for interviews to confirm age and nationality, state DIF offices take custody of unaccompanied Mexican minors, Arvizu said. Once in their custody, DIF's primary mission is simple, at least on its face: attend to the medical and emotional needs of children and get them back to their families and communities of origin in Mexico as quickly as possibly.

However, because so many parents are living illegally on the U.S. side of the border, things can get complicated. Arvizu said that when biological parents cannot come for the children or cannot be found, other close relatives, like grandparents, older siblings and aunts and uncles, can come for the young migrants if the parents have approved it.

In rare cases when parents and close relatives cannot be tracked down, the Sonoran DIF will transfer children to the custody of DIF officials in the state they're from.

Hard stories
There were 26 minors at the shelter on Tuesday morning, six of whom were Central American. Arvizu said that children normally stay just a handful of days and at most two-to-three weeks. The shelter has a capacity for 130 children, which is often reached during peak migration months like February and March.
While children wait at Camino a Casa for travel arrangements to be made, they receive three meals a day, access to personal hygiene products, psychological and legal services, medical care and even basic education during the school year. With the exception of legal services, Central American youth at the shelter enjoy access to the same services before INM begins the process to return them to their country of origin.
"We treat them like Mexicans," Arvizu said. "They're just like any other kid. We treat them equally. The only difference is that we don't have any knowledge about how their case is going."

Arvizu, who became the shelter's coordinator five years ago, said she had little personal understanding of migration before starting her job and the stories she heard from children in her first months were unsettling. Arvizu, who is from Nogales, Sonora but whose family largely resides in the United States, said that the ease with which she has always crossed the border made it difficult to appreciate the undocumented immigrant experience.
"It's harder at the start," she said. "It's really tough. You collide with reality."

Some stories were harder to hear than others.
"The cases that impact me the most are those of children who get lost in the desert," she said. "Seven, eight, nine days, they come in with their feet totally shredded. Children, I believe, should never have to endure anything like that."
"You have to learn to get past that pain so that you can help them," she said.

Cruz Mariano Posada Fimbres, the shelter's psychologist, said that emotional support is among the most important services offered by the shelter.
"More than anything, many kids arrive here sad, crying because they weren't able to cross into the United States," he said. "They're sad because they wanted to go and be with their mother, because they had a sick family member in Mexico and they wanted to go and make money to help them, or they had a single mother with five kids and they wanted to get some money to help them too. So, they show up here beat down, sad, disappointed and frustrated."

According to Posada, the experiences of children who were trying to reunite with family members are the hardest for the kids and most moving to him.
"They are children whose parents left them as newborns, months old, who now are 14, 15 years old, and they don't know their parents, they've never seen them," he said. "Yeah, they've seen photos, but they've never lived with their parents, never felt their touch, their human qualities, their parental sensitivity. When they aren't able to cross, their frustration for me is very poignant, the way they suffer for not having been able to see their parents."

Headed south
Joksan, a 13-year-old boy from the Gulf Coast state of Veracruz who had recently been apprehended trying to cross into the U.S. near Nogales, knows that frustration well. His father left to find work in Atlanta seven years ago and his mother followed four years later and left her son in the care of his grandmother. Since then, just like Yohana, it's been phone calls and photos that have kept the family together.
"Every time they call me, I start crying," Joksan said.

To get their only child to Atlanta, Joksan's parents paid a coyote 7,000 pesos ($530). Now in DIF custody, Joksan's parents have given an aunt of his in the south-central state of Morelos permission to come for their son and take him back to Veracruz to live with his grandmother.
Joksan, however, is not happy with the plan. "I want to try to cross again, so I can be with my parents," he said.


Note: Following from Homeland Security Today, a industry publication and a good english language source.
Those very interested in these issues may want to consider a subscription.

DHS IG Confirms Infectious Diseases Among 'Many' Illegal Children Entering US
By: Anthony Kimery, Editor-in-Chief
08/01/2014 ( 9:30am)

"Many Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC) and family units" overwhelming US Border Patrol in the Rio Grande Valley (RGV) of Texas "require treatment for communicable diseases, including respiratory illnesses, tuberculosis, chicken pox and scabies," stated a Thursday memorandum from Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General (IG) John Roth to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson confirming rumors and allegations of transmissible diseases from the flood of illegal aliens who been entering the United States through the RGV border with Mexico.

The report was released as a new facility to house illegal immigrant families at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Artesia, New Mexico has been quarantined because of an outbreak of chicken pox in roughly 300 individuals. About 80 also reportedly tested positive for tuberculosis.

The IG's July 31 report is based on 87 unannounced site visits conducted by Office of Inspector General (OIG agents from July 1-16 at 63 detention centers in Texas, Arizona and California, largely operated by Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The OIG's oversight of the detention centers is ongoing and reports will be issued monthly.

The IG found that "UAC and family unit illnesses and unfamiliarity with bathroom facilities resulted in unsanitary conditions and exposure to human waste in some holding facilities," and that, "DHS employees reported exposure to communicable diseases and becoming sick on duty."

"For example," the IG's memorandum stated, "during a recent site visit to the Del Rio US Border Patrol Station and Del Rio Port of Entry, CBP personnel reported contracting scabies, lice and chicken pox. Two CBP Officers reported that their children were diagnosed with chicken pox within days of the CBP Officers' contact with a UAC who had chicken pox. In addition, Border Patrol personnel at the Clint Station and Santa Teresa Station reported that they were potentially exposed to tuberculosis."

OIG agents reported "Some problems were identified, including children requiring treatment for communicable diseases and DHS employees who have become ill from contact with their charges."

The IG's report would seem to make it clear that many UACs have not been properly vaccinated and are carrying a potentially wide variety of infectious diseases, putting CBP officers, Border Patrol agents and communities at risk. Furthermore, as CBP, Border Patrol and public health officials have pointed out, serious infectious diseases may not have manifested yet.

According to the border region health care officials, hospitals have diagnosed persons with infectious diarrhea, multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, scabies, chickenpox and sexually transmitted diseases. There also have been reports from Border Patrol of MRSA staph infections.

"I've talked to border patrol down in McAllen [Texas]. They've seen TB; they've seen chicken pox; they've seen scabies. And according to Border Patrol, 4 or 5 of their agents have tested positive for those diseases," Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat from Laredo, was quoted saying.

Department of Health and Human Services spokesman Kenneth Wolfe also confirmed that an unaccompanied child was hospitalized after being diagnosed with the H1N1 influenza virus, more commonly known as swine flu.

Only a few weeks ago, however, a news report stated the GOP was "making alarmist claims against migrant children, saying "GOP Rep. Phil Gingrey, a retired Georgia physician, is stoking fears that the flood of migrant children is bringing loads of diseases into US, even cases of the severe and oftentimes fatal Ebola virus."

The report stated "Gingrey's claims join a chorus of alarms from the right conjuring a major public health crisis at the border with alleged outbreaks of scabies, lice and chicken pox in the facilities holding the migrant kids."

The DHS IG's report released Thursday makes clear that these "outbreaks" are no longer "alleged."

"The border patrol gave us a list of the diseases that they're concerned about, and Ebola was one of those," Gingrey told NBC News.

MSNBC reported "Medical experts swiftly panned Gingrey's claims for raising hysteria, noting that Ebola is not only difficult to transmit, but also does not exist in Central America. According to the World Health Organization, Ebola has only been found in humans living in sub-Saharan Africa."

According to CBP data, citizens of West African nations in the Ebola hot zones have been caught trying to enter the US through the Rio Grande Valley.

This is a potentially serious concern, officials expressed to Homeland Security Today, saying illegal aliens from African nations caught trying to enter the United States could be carrying the highly lethal and infectious Ebola virus given the virus's widespread outbreak across West Africa.

This week, Doctors Without Borders said the Ebola epidemic across West Africa is "out of control."

"This is the biggest and most complex Ebola outbreak in history. Far too many lives have been lost already," CDC Director Tom Frieden said Thursday at a press briefing.

Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to ebola virus though 8-10 days is most common.

CDC said the risk of exposure has been confirmed in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Gabon, South Sudan, Ivory Coast, Uganda, Republic of the Congo (ROC) and South Africa (imported).

Photo: Adolescent female with varicella lesions in various stages. Source, CDC, Copyright American Academy of Pediatrics

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