Washington, DC — As Title 42 expires today, Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) is on the ground in Mexico advocating for the safety of unaccompanied children. With offices in the United States, Europe, and Mexico, KIND is the preeminent international nongovernmental organization devoted to the protection of unaccompanied and separated children working with government officials on both sides of the border to protect unaccompanied children through the process of lawful immigration.
Elba Coria Márquez, KIND’s Director of Advocacy in Mexico, issued the following statement:
“Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) works in Mexico to ensure the rights of children on the move are upheld at every step of their journey to safety. The Mexican government is an important partner in this work and has a vital role in helping children alone at the border who may be particularly vulnerable during this uncertain time. KIND urges the government of Mexico to take action now to protect children on the move. Our recommendations include:
- Instructing government officials in border regions not to obstruct the access of unaccompanied children to ports of entry to seek protection under U.S. law.
- Implementing existing law, protocols and mechanisms to ensure individual best interest assessment and determination processes for children alone and that no child is repatriated unless return to the country of origin is in their best interests
- Enhancing coordination among key actors for child protection in the government and strengthening collaboration with civil society actors.
- Ensuring appropriate reception and care for children either by the government or by civil society organizations. A strong collaboration between the authorities and civil society organizations is essential for ensuring the well-being and rights of migrant children.
- Assisting unaccompanied and separated children’s ability to receive critical social services while in Mexico.
We look forward to working with the Mexican government to ensure children alone are given the care and protection they need and deserve.”
To speak with Elba Coria Márquez, KIND’s Director of Advocacy in Mexico, about her work with Mexican government officials and how ongoing policy changes are impacting unaccompanied children, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.