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U.S. and other countries sign declaration to help migrants

As the United States and Mexico witness an ever-increasing flock of refugees and migrants headed to the border, the Biden administration is now asking for assistance from neighboring countries to help tackle the immigration crisis.

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    Migrant caravans headed to the U.S. southern border

    In the past few years, immigration authorities have seen a surge in migrants traveling north to the U.S. southern border in the hopes of seeking asylum in the United States. For safety reasons, many of these migrants travel in large groups known as caravans.

    Recently a large caravan consisting of migrants from South and Central America entered Mexico with the intention of traveling further north to the U.S. southern border. Upon entry into Mexico, 7,000 temporary documents and travel visas were issued to eligible migrants. It is unknown whether these migrants will use these documents and visas to stay in Mexico or attempt to travel further north and apply for asylum in the United States or even cross the U.S. border illegally.

    Biden at Summit of Americas

    What is pledged in the joint declaration?

    As migrants flock to the U.S. border, both the United States and Mexico are forced to deal with the strain of an ever-increasing migrant population camping along the border. To help ameliorate the situation, the Biden administration has recently collaborated with other Central and South American countries and even Canada at the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles to help come up with a solution to the increasing numbers of migrants fleeing their home countries.

    As a result, 20 different countries have signed on to a joint declaration on immigration where each specific country made pledges to take certain actions to help displaced individuals such as the following:

    • The U.S. pledges to admit 20,000 refugees from Latin American countries over the next 2 years
    • The U.S. pledges to issue an additional 11,500 seasonal worker visas to migrants from Central America and Haiti
    • The Biden administration will allocate $314 million to support Venezuelan migrants. Of the money allocated, £171 million will go towards food and humanitarian relief for refugees and immigrants in South America
    • Mexico pledges to accept at least 20,000 additional temporary workers
    • Mexico pledges to unveil a new program accepting 20,000 Guatemalan workers
    • Canada pledges to accept 4,000 refugees from Central and South America
    • Ecuador pledges to create a pathway to regular migration status for any Venezuelan nationals who have entered Ecuador illegally and currently remain in the country unlawfully

    Furthermore, the Biden administration hopes to expand their multilateral ‘sting operation’ with other countries targeted at disrupting human trafficking rings operating in Latin America. In addition, the Biden administration will resume the country’s participation in the Haitian Family Reunification Parole Program where U.S. citizens and green card holders can apply for parole for family members who reside in Haiti.

    Temporary Worker Programs

    Many of the pledges issued by countries in this declaration are centered around putting migrants to work through temporary worker programs.

    Countries such as Mexico and Guatemala are in the process of expanding migrant labor programs to help accommodate their own labor shortages. Canada has even agreed to welcome more than 50,000 agricultural workers from the Caribbean, Guatemala, and Mexico this year.

    In addition to providing seasonal worker visas to migrant workers, the United States government will soon launch a U.S. Department of Agriculture $65 million pilot program designed to issue grants for American farmers who plan on hiring seasonal agricultural workers.

    Leaders at Summit of Americas

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