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Migration movement of Mexico and Guatemala John Hickman, Jonathan Portillo, Raymond Portillo, Rodel Mariano.

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Presentation on theme: "Migration movement of Mexico and Guatemala John Hickman, Jonathan Portillo, Raymond Portillo, Rodel Mariano."— Presentation transcript:

1 Migration movement of Mexico and Guatemala John Hickman, Jonathan Portillo, Raymond Portillo, Rodel Mariano

2 Historical relationship between Mexico and Guatemala -Civil wars of the 1980’s causes an increase in immigration from Central America -Refugees make Mexico their home to avoid genocide. -Natural disasters such as Hurricane Mitch and Stan have placed added pressure on these already poverty stricken communities causing them to migrate north -In the last two decades, however, a growing factor in Central American migration to Mexico has been the adoption of free-trade policies in the region.

3 Who are the migrants? -Migrants are not only coming from Guatemala and Mexico! Additional migrants are flowing towards the Unites states from Honduras, and El Salvador. -In 2005, according to the Mexican National Migration Institute, 6,679 documented Guatemalans worked on Mexican farms, with 3.5 percent of them under 14 years of age, 89.4 percent between 15 and 48 and 7.1 percent older than 49. Of those, 87.8 percent were male, while 12.2 percent were female. -The United States Government wants to be assured that most deportations take place on Mexican soil rather than on United states territory, as it costs this country $1,700 on average to send a Central American home, while Mexican deportation expenses can total as little as $22.

4 Migrant Profile of The U.S.A -The most prevalent categories of migrants trying to pierce the border between Mexico and the U.S. is mainly Guatemalan migrant farmers looking for seasonal work on large commercial farms. -Mexicans, Central and South Americans are also trying to reach their destination, the United States; through Mexico.

5 Ultimate Destination

6 Undocumented population in the United States by Country and Origin of Region as of 2002

7 Net Emigration from Guatemala per year 1990-2005

8 Top Three countries where migrants originate -Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador

9 Work Resume -Guatemalan farm workers perform seasonal labor in the southern states of Mexico, often in Chiapas, working on plantations and farms because wages in that country are appreciably higher than in Guatemala and there are far more opportunities to find work. -2007 Mexican National Migration Institute figures indicate that the majority of seasonal migrants are young men capable of the hard labor necessary in agriculture. One can also presume that they do not yet have a family or have just started one; thus, they are likely to eventually return to Guatemala and not become permanent residents of Mexico.


11 Rate of Exchange - A number of indicators strongly suggest the numbers of Central American transmigrants crossing into Mexico from Guatemala has increased considerably in recent years and continues to rise. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has also noted a marked increase in the number of persons making the journey north through Mexico, many times losing their lives.

12 Rate of Exchange - The foreign-born population increased between 1990 and 2000 by slightly more than 150,000, amounting to around 500,000, about 0.5 percent of Mexico's total population from Europe, particularly from Spain, accounted for 11.9 percent of all foreign born, followed by those born in Central America (11.2 percent), South America (7.3 percent), and the Caribbean (2.4 percent). The remaining 4 percent came from the rest of the world.

13 Ambition and progress -between 1993 and 1999, Mexico and Guatemala, working together organized the voluntary return of 43,000 refugees to Guatemala. For the remaining 22,000 Guatemalans thought to be in the country, Mexico implemented a migratory stabilization program, aimed at helping them to eventually gain legal residence in Mexico. -In 2003, the number of documented Guatemalans in Mexico had fallen to 2,601. - According to a 2000 census, 55 percent of those Guatemalans living in Mexico were to be found in Chiapas. -Unfortunately, indifferent attitude towards the indigenous population along the border has led to an increase in violence and abuse by the Mexican security forces, whom are not always properly charged with rooting out evidence of corruption on the part of officials on both sides of the border.

14 Detention/Deportation Since 2001, detentions and deportations have increased significantly. In 2001, 144, 346 Central American migrants were detained in Mexico, By 2004 that number had risen to 204, 113. Of the total detentions conducted by the INM, 93.5 per cent are detentions of Central Americans. Broken down by nationality, this figure includes Guatemalans (43.8 %), Hondurans (33.7%), and Salvadorans (16%). Deportations: Guatemalans constituted 44.3 per cent of deportees, 34.6 percent were Hondurans and 16.7 percent were Salvadoran. Nearly half of them occur in Chiapas 45.8%.

15 Methods of Arrival - Every year, hundreds of thousands of Central Americans cross illegally into Mexico—along the country’s southern border, which angles over 750 miles of river, volcanic slopes and jungle at the top of Central America. Nobody knows exactly how many of those migrants are headed to the United States, but most put that figure at 150,000 or more a year, and the pace of illegal migration north has picked up dramatically over the past decade. A number of these immigrants will walk dangerous terrains, others will ride the trains that cross the borders,

16 Visible Border

17 Divided like all of the world

18 Methods/Dangers - Routes are saturated with dangers, especially now that the INM (Mexico’s National Immigration Institute) decided to enforce “PLAN SUR” where more agents and migrant policies are put into these border zones. Most migrants are unfamiliar with the territory. To traverse Chiapas, migrants have to cross mountains, cross the jungle areas, or follow the coast of Chiapas up to Oaxaca.

19 Passage ways from Guatemala into Mexico

20 Methods/Dangers - Migrants that travel by foot are the poorest and cannot afford to pay a smuggler. Some migrants also choose to cross these vast distances by hitching a ride on the freight trains that depart from Ciudad Hidalgo and Tapachula for Veracruz and other points north. Many migrants sleep around the train tracks or wait for the night time train departure. With the lack of legitimate law enforcement; violence, rape, extortion are very common.

21 Border Control To achieve its goal of containment, control operations and mechanisms were implemented at strategic points in the 1990s, particularly along the highway routes migrants and their guides favor. Migratory agents and members of the Federal Preventive Police perform control and verification activities, such as asking to see identification, at specific points but also in any location they choose. They stop buses and other vehicles as well as people walking or staying in certain areas or routes that migrants frequent. A number of agents from other governmental agencies also participate in these checks although the law has not authorized them to do so.

22 Border Patrol -Eighty percent of Mexico’s 713 mile border connects Guatemala and Mexico which represents the main illegal entryway into Southern Mexico. -The Mexico-Guatemala border has only three main crossing sites - Tecun Uman, El Carmen, and La Mesilla and eight official sites in total, but research from the University of Chiapas suggests that there are over 1000 blind spots, 44 of them accessible by vehicle. -Drug and contraband trafficking are prevalent along this border and their presence weakens local government institutions through corruption and bribes.

23 Border Patrol - Staff and equipment shortages are endemic to every law enforcement and military agency operating in the region. An overstretched army brigade of about 700 soldiers covers an area the size of Belgium. Guatemala's air force owns just two helicopters and no tactical radar capable of seeing low-flying aircraft.


25 The Calculation of Risk -Some of the risks migrants face in crossing these borders are extremely dangerous. Human trafficking is quite difficult to detect around these regions, due to the large Numbers of smuggled migrants that traverse it alongside trafficked persons. Exploitation for forced prostitution is the most common form of trafficking in the region. Most Mexican criminals dupe central American migrants into working in brothels in Tecun Uman, Ciudad Hidalgo, and tapachula by offering them jobs as a waitress. -Some women who intend to cross the border and don’t have money to pay, are often forced into prostitute as a way to pay this debt.

26 New Life; By any means necessary

27 Reoccurring Problems -Drug cartels create a problem for migrants when crossing this border. Drug traffickers often capture these migrants and are detained, robbed and at times murdered if they do not meet the demands of their captures. But also the treatment of migrants by Mexican authorities is also problematic. -Corruption, the involvement of multiple, untrained law enforcement agencies, and arbitrary and discriminatory detention policies all contribute to the situation. Extensive corruption and extortion issues move around these border patrol agencies.

28 Conflict, Violence, Death - Americans’ demand for drugs affects the daily lives of local residents living far south of Mexico. Huge quantities of drugs pass through the Central American land bridge on their trip to consumers in North America. The three northernmost countries of Central America, Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador, have the highest murder rates in the region, much higher than those in adjacent Mexico. According to a recent story in the Washington Post, the homicide rate in El Salvador is 71 per 100,000 (Honduras: 67 per 100,000, Guatemala: 52 per 100,000), compared to 14 per 100,000 in Mexico. Much of the violence encountered in Central America is fueled by Mexican gangs, like Los Zetas and the Sinaloa Cartel, whose members compete with local traffickers for control of the all-important drug transportation routes.

29 Impact of Migration - The 2000 US census counted 480,665 foreign born from Guatemala, but IOM data suggest that approximately one million Guatemalans now live in the United States. Although the IOM estimates that around 200,000 Guatemalan migrants living in the United States are undocumented, some civil society organizations believe the actual figure is higher. In March 2006, the Pew Hispanic Center, estimated 320,000 undocumented immigrants from Guatemala, based on results of the US Census Bureau's March 2005 Current Population Survey.

30 Migration Employment -The International Organization for Migration estimates that between 6,000 and 12,000 new Guatemalan migrants arrive in the United States via Mexico each year. Their remittances, which are used for a variety of short-term needs and long-term purposes, have yet to decisively reduce poverty levels. -Guatemalans have sought employment abroad since the 19th century, when significant numbers made their way to work on the coffee plantations in Soconusco, now part of Chiapas, Mexico. Traditionally, most of those who emigrated to Mexico were male and young. Once established, their families would often join them.

31 Remittances -Remittances from Guatemalan emigrants have been and will continue to be a fundamental pillar of economic support for hundreds of thousands of urban and rural families. As remittances have grown — in 2005 they topped US$3 billion for the first time ever — their macroeconomic impact has begun to be felt nationwide, but especially in those departments which have experienced the largest emigration. -According to IOM, almost all (97.6 percent) are sent from the United States, and each household received, on average, about US$306 per month. Guatemala's remittances now exceed the total volume of its annual exports or income from tourism. -In 2004, the population residing abroad and sending remittances back home was approximately 1,049,349; 71.5 percent were men and 28.5 percent were women. Around 3.7 million Guatemalans (around a third of the population) now receive remittances; 57 percent of them live in rural areas. Four departments — Guatemala, San Marcos, Huehuetenango, and Alta Verapaz — receive almost half of all remittances.

32 Remittances -Initially, remittances were used to purchase basic goods such as food and clothing, but more recently, families have started spending the extra money on "luxury" items such as televisions, cookers, irons, and electrical goods, according to a 2006 study by the Centro de Estudios de Guatemala (CEG). -More recently, remittances have been invested (largely through hometown associations) in housing projects, water and drainage systems, schools, health centers, and other communal services. Thus, argue many civil society organizations, the government has been freed up from its traditional responsibilities. -The latest IOM survey on remittances and microenterprises conducted in 2005 found that 48.7 percent of remittances are used to supplement household budgets, mainly for food; 20.6 percent are spent on other goods and services; 15.2 percent are invested or saved; and 15.4 percent go toward "social investment" (education and health).


34 Attempts at Restructuring -It is well known that the economic pressures for restructuring have been experienced in over recent decades by every economy, including the Mexican and the United States economies. The U.S., as a wide and complex economy, has experienced a variety of sectoral and regional strategies. One of these strategies 397 has involved the hiring of low skilled labor at very low wages in order to remain competitive in certain agriculture activities (particularly evident in California) and in some services (Escobar, A., F. Bean and S. Weintraub, June 1996). -For Mexico, on the other hand, the result of trade liberalization, adjustment and privatization during the last decade or so has been a huge increase in the levels of unemployment and the search for all kinds of complementary incomes to finance basic family survival (Cortés, F. and R. Rubalcava, 1995).

35 Guatemalans Who Receive Remittances by Family Relationship with the Surveyed Head of Family, 2005

36 Attempts at Restructuring -Open trade has meant the successful recovery of certain agriculture activities, in particular those for export, and it has also channeled substantial new investment into subcontracting (maquiladoras) and a few other industrial and services activities. -These trends will shortly show up in higher local demand for labor in Mexico, even if in some cases (as in the first direct effect of maquiladoras) this is at the expense of employment in other locations in the U.S. -The North American scene has shown initiatives beyond the usual individual country moves. Most noticeable has been the U.S. initiative to incorporate Canada and then Mexico into NAFTA. This can be understood as a common strategy to better compete against Europe and Asia. It is most evident in the immediate strengthening experienced in the economic ties of the three NAFTA countries, most clearly shown in trade and investment statistics. And it is in the context of economic changes and the recent evolution of migration, the “demand-pull supply-push” interaction, where recent effects can be located.


38 GDP Per Capita

39 Garbage, Debris and Death

40 Brutal Reality



43 Recent News %E2%80%99s-immigration-laws-the- untold-story/ forced-to-be-sex-slaves-in-mexico/story- e6frfl09-1226042334684 uthless-kidnappings-on-the-migrant- trail_news

44 What can/should be done - This case goes beyond the United States as it truly is a Global issue. After discussing strengths, weaknesses, cause and effects; we decided that the roots grow extremely deeper than financial survival and the protection of borders. What we are really dealing with here is a lack of recognition of human equality that stretches across the canvas of the world.

45 Sources Burgos, Vanessa. "Mexico-Guatemala: The Other Border." Upside Down World. 14 Nov. 2007. Web. 20 Apr. 2011. . Castillo, M. Á. (2003). The mexico-guatemala border: New controls on transborder migrations in view of recent integration schemes. Frontera Norte, 29, 15. Elbel, Fred. "Numbers of Illegal Aliens in the U.S. by Fred Elbel - THE AMERICAN RESISTANCE FOUNDATION - Information on Illegal Immigration Numbers." THE AMERICAN RESISTANCE FOUNDATION - a Coalition of Immigration Crime Fighters Opposing Illegal and Undocumented Immigration, Founded by D.A King. 1 Jan. 2004. Web. 20 Apr. 2011.. James, S. (2006, April). Guatemala: economic migrants replace political refugees. Retrieved from migrationinformation. Ogren, C. (2007). Migration and human rights on the mexico-guatemala border. International Migration, 45(4), 203-243. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2435.2007.00424.x Open migrant house in guatemala's borders. (1997). Migration World Magazine, 25(1), 26. Tapachula. (2010). Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition,, 1-1. Unger, K., & Verduzco, G. (n.d.). Impacts of migration in mexico. Informally published manuscript, University of Texas, Texas. Retrieved from

46 Pictures/Charts Gonzales, Hector. "Guatemala and Mexico Border." Google. 22 July 2006. Web. 20 Apr. 2011..

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