Bloggings on Deportation and Removal

by Matthew Kolken

Report: 50% of people deported to Mexico have at least one relative that is a United States citizen

The University of Arizona’s Center for Latin American Studies has issued a report entitled The Shadow of the Wall: Family Separation, Immigration Enforcement and Security.  

The report resulted from interviews of 1,113 recent deportees regarding their encounters with U.S. immigration officials from being caught through their return to Mexico.  The interviews were conducted at ports of entry immediately following deportation, and also in migrant shelters in Mexico.

The focus of the report was to determine:

  • Who are the more than 400,000 people deported to Mexico each year? 
  • What do they experience during their journeys? 
  • How do immigration enforcement programs operate and are there notable di!erences between authorities’ stated practices and people’s experiences? 
  • What are the standard practices and potential problems with costly immigration enforcement programs? 
  • What is “security” and how are specific programs related to immigration enforcement helping to achieve this goal?

The investigation concluded that:

  • Approximately 50% spoke at least some English;
  • 42% were the sole income provider for their families; 
  • 75% had previously lived or worked in the United States. Among those who had lived or worked in the United States, the median time spent in the country was seven years;
  • 50% had at least one family member who is a U.S. citizen, and about 25% have at least one child under the age of 18 who have U.S. citizenship;
  • Almost 50% intended to permanently emigrate during their last crossing; and 28% stated that their current home is located in the United States.

Click here to read the report in its entirety.


About The Author

Matthew Kolken is a trial lawyer with experience in all aspects of United States Immigration Law including Immigration Courts throughout the United States, and appellate practice before the Board of Immigration Appeals, the U.S. District Courts, and U.S. Courts of Appeals. He is admitted to practice in the courts of the State of New York , the United States District Court for the Western District of New York, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).


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