América Central

Strengthening Mexico’s Protection of Central American Unaccompanied Minors in Transit

(Julio 2017). This report draws on previously unpublished data from Mexican government agencies, interviews with key officials, and accounts from civil society to examine the legal framework for the protection of child migrants in Mexico, its implementation, and the gaps between the two during the apprehension, screening, and housing process. Despite a legal framework that emphasizes the best-interests-of-the-child principle and has a generous definition of who qualifies for refugee status, the author highlights a number of areas where further progress is needed if young migrants are to be adequately screened for international protection needs, housed in age-appropriate facilities, and informed of their right to apply for asylum.
http://www.migrationpolicy.org/sites/default/files/publications/UACsMexico-FINAL.pdf 

Easy Prey: Criminal Violence and Central American Migration

Massive deportations from Mexico and the U.S. have failed to stem the tide of Central Americans fleeing endemic poverty combined with epidemic violence. Stepped up enforcement has diverted undocumented migration into more costly, circuitous and dangerous channels. Criminal gangs and the corrupt officials who enable them are the beneficiaries of a policy that forces desperate people to pay increasing sums to avoid detention, extortion or kidnapping. Beefed-up border control inadvertently fuels human smuggling and fortifies criminal gangs that increasingly control that industry. Governments must guarantee those fleeing violence the opportunity to seek asylum through fair, efficient procedures, while launching a major regional effort to provide security and economic opportunity in home countries. Central American leaders, especially in the northern triangle of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, must in turn address chronic insecurity more effectively while monitoring and assisting those deported, especially children and adolescents, so they have an option other than fleeing again.

https://www.crisisgroup.org/es/latin-america-caribbean/central-america/easy-prey-criminal-violence-and-central-american-migration

Trends in Unaccompanied Child and Family Migration from Central America

After reaching record high levels during the spring and summer of 2014, the flow of Central American unaccompanied children (UACs) and families arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border declined sharply. Data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) show a resurgence in the numbers of child migrants and families from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras arriving in the United States in the summer and fall of 2015.

http://www.migrationpolicy.org/sites/default/files/publications/UnaccompaniedMinors-Factsheet-FINAL.pdf