Recognizing Refugees Conference

Event Start DateWednesday, December 10, 2014 – Friday, December 12, 2014

Recognizing Refugees from Mexico and Central America

As all of you know, there’s a smoldering refugee crisis in Mexico and Central America. The number of people reaching the United States ebbs and flows. But, levels of internal displacement, violence, and insecurity remain extremely high. Relatively few of those who have fled have received refugee status or related protections, and the horrific exploitation of migrants and refugees in transit continues unabated. There’s widespread agreement on the nature of the violence and the need to address it from the bottom up. But, policy makers across the region seem more concerned with managing the visibility of the problem than addressing its underlying causes. As a result, the next crisis lurks around the corner.

The Trans-Border Institute invites leading scholars, immigration lawyers, asylees, and diplomats from the United States, Mexico, and Central America to participate in a conference around the following questions:

• How is the current refugee crisis in the region related to past refugee crises and other policies related to the legacy of civil war and authoritarianism in the region? How should this affect our policy response to the present crisis?

• What factors account for the relatively low grant rate for asylum seekers from Mexico and Central America in the United States, and how might we improve it?

• For those ineligible or unable to meet the high evidentiary standards for asylum, what alternative protections might we provide for migrants arriving, in transit, or upon repatriation at the regional, national, and local levels?

• What policies have proved the most effective at reducing the violence and insecurity that forces people to flee, and how can we replicate and scale them up locally, nationally, and regionally?

ContactMartha Garcia | marthagarcia@sandiego.edu | (619) 260-4148
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