Border Patrol agents along the United States-Mexico border encountered around 7484 Venezuelans last month – more than fourteen years for which records exist. Moreover, the instant surge drew comparisons to the midcentury arrival of Cubans escaping the communist rule of Fidel Castro. It is also a forerunner of a new type of immigration that caught the Biden government unexpectedly: coronavirus pandemic refugees.
Several of the almost 17306 Venezuelan nationals who crossed the southern U.S. border illegally since January had been living for many years in other South American nations, part of a migration of almost six million Venezuelans since Nicolás Maduro, the country’s president, took power in 2013. Whereas some are governmental opponents fearing jailing and harassment, the huge majority are escaping long-running economic damage marked by shortages of medicines & food and blackouts.
With the COVID-19 still raging in several parts of South America, they need to relocate again. Progressively, they are being joined at the United States border by people coming from the nations they originally fled to – an even greater number of Brazilians and Ecuadorians arrived this year – along with far-flung countries hit hard by the deadly coronavirus, such as Uzbekistan and India.
42% of all Families Encountered Along U.S. Border in May
According to the statistics of the United States government, forty-two percent of all families approached the border last month hailed from places other than Honduras, El Salvador, Mexico, and Guatemala – the traditional drivers of migratory trends. That compares with only eight percent during the last sharp increase in migration in 2019. The United States Border Patrol (USBP) recorded over one lac and eighty thousand encounters in May, last twenty years high that includes repeated attempts of migrants to cross.
Compared with other migrants, Venezuelan nationals gain some extra privileges – a reflection of their firmer financial standing, American policies, and higher education levels that failed to remove Maduro but even so made deportation all but impossible.
Furthermore, the huge majority of several Venezuelans the Associated Press spoke to June in Del Rio, twenty-seven-year-old Lis Briceno already migrated once before. After completing graduation with petroleum engineering, she didn’t get a job in oil fields near her hometown of Maracaibo without declaring her devotion and loyalty to the socialist leadership of Venezuela.
Therefore, a few years ago, she moved to Chile to work with a technology company. However, as the COVID-19 pandemic and anti-government unrest tanked the economy of Chile, sales fell, and her company shuttered. So, she sold what she could – a smartphone, a refrigerator, and her bed – to raise the four thousand dollars needed for her journey to the United States.
Temporary Protected Status
Once in the United States, the nationals of Venezuelans be inclined to fare better than other groups. American President Joe Biden granted Temporary Protected Status on a projected three lac and twenty thousand Venezuela nationals. Moreover, the designation allows individuals coming from nations devastated by disaster or war to work legally in the United States and gives protection from deportation.
In the meantime, as the migrants leave Del Rio to re-join loved ones in the United States, they are confident that they will receive an opportunity denied them back home country with hard work and sacrifice.