The number of migrants dying during the journey across the U.S.-Mexico border has not significantly dropped despite far lower numbers of people crossing the border illegally. The desert environment is highly hazardous, though the U.S. Customs and Border Protections (CBP) continues efforts to prevent deaths in the area.
The increased militarization of the border and an unwillingness to change policies that prompt the crossing is to blame, according to human rights organizations. Each year the CBP reports approximate numbers of border crossers and deaths by tallying the number of bodies found in the area and the number of migrants brought into custody. The Tuscon-based group, Coalición de Derechos Humanos, has been aiding to identify remains.
The number of migrants who attempted to cross the border illegally had dropped 62 percent in 2011 from 2007. However, the number of people found dead had only dropped from 398 to 368. Though less people are crossing the border, it spears, judging by the data, that the crossing has become more dangerous. The weather and terrain make it so that those not properly equipped may find themselves in crisis.
Without addressing the root political and economic issues, claim the human rights groups, border crossings are likely to continue. There are applications and processes to legally enter the United States. Rather than risking one’s life in the border desert, people can apply to safely enter the country via family, employment, or individual visas. Though this may sound complicated, with the aid of an immigration attorney, the application process can be expedited.
Source: Huffington Post, ” Border Crossing Deaths More Common As Illegal Immigration Declines,” Carolina Moreno, Aug. 17, 2012
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