US-bound migrants struggle as Mexican support fades

Apr 23, 2019 by

Reports from the latest Central American migrant caravan indicate a growing lack of food and shelter. Support from Mexican towns and officials for continuous waves of migrants is drying up.

By Sonia Perez

Madison Mendoza, her feet aching and her face burned by the sun, wept as she said she had nothing to feed her 2-year-old son who she’d brought with her on the long trek toward the United States.

Ms. Mendoza said an aunt in Honduras had convinced her to join the migrant caravan, which she did two weeks ago in the capital of Tegucigalpa. The aunt said she’d have no problems, that people along the route in Mexico would help as they did for a large caravan that moved through the area in October.

But this time, the help did not come. The outpouring of aid that once greeted Central American migrants as they trekked in caravans through southern Mexico has been drying up. Hungrier, advancing slowly or not at all, and hounded by unhelpful local officials, frustration is growing among the 5,000 to 8,000 migrants in the southern state of Chiapas.

“What causes me pain is that the baby asks me for food and there are days when I can’t provide it,” said Ms. Mendoza, who fled Honduras with almost no money because she feared for her life after receiving threats from the father of her son. “I thought that with the baby, people would help me on road.”

Members of the caravan in October received food and shelter from town governments, churches, and passers-by. Drivers of trucks stopped to give them a lift. Little of that is happening this time. And local officials who once gave them temporary permits to work in Mexico, now seem to snare them in red tape. Truckers and drivers have been told they will be fined if caught transporting migrants without proper documentation.

Ms. Mendoza bathed her son, José, under a stream of water in Escuintla, a Mexican town 95 miles north of the Guatemalan border. It was the first time she has been able to bath the child since they left Tegucigalpa.

“I don’t even have a peso,” she said, teary-eyed. Many migrants are collecting mangos and fruits from trees along the route and sharing food among themselves.

Continue: US-bound migrants struggle as Mexican support fades – CSMonitor.com

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