Target: Miguel Angel Osorio Chong, Mexican Minister of the Interior
Goal: Demand an investigation into police intimidation of a migrants’ shelter in Mexico.
Recent police intimidation at a migrants’ shelter in Tapachula, Mexico has left both staff members and those living at the shelter fearing for their lives. Sign the petition and demand that the Mexican government protect workers and residents at the Todos Por Ellos (“All for Them”) shelter, and to launch a full and thorough investigation into the incident.
Migrants’ shelters are not uncommon in Mexico; many people from Central and South America cross Mexico as they attempt to enter the United States. According to Amnesty International, many migrants are caught by the Mexican authorities and sent back to their home countries, while others face being “kidnapped by gangs, sometimes with the complicity of local officials.” Shelters like Todos Por Ellos provide vulnerable travelers with food, shelter, medical and legal aid, and resources for victims of sexual exploitation.
Recently, Todos Por Ellos was the target of a frightening police raid. Eight federal police officers claimed to be responding to allegations of child prostitution and exploitation at the shelter, but they had no warrant. The officers told the manager of the shelter “that he would be detained, that migrants would be deported, and that they would ‘have the hell beaten out of them.'” Although the staff, volunteers, and migrants at the shelter all escaped without serious injuries, many now fear for their lives.
Aside from being unnecessarily violent, the raid was also illegal; according to Amnesty International, “article 76 in the Migration Act (Ley de Migración)…states that not even the National Institute of Migration (Instituto Nacional de Migración, INM) is allowed to perform migration checks on civil society organizations where migrants are hosted.”
Stand up for those who are already vulnerable. Sign the petition and urge the Mexican authorities to respect the rights of migrants and those who shelter them.
Migrants are some of the most vulnerable people in Mexico–at risk of being deported to their homelands, they also face injury, illness, sexual exploitation, kidnapping, and death. Why add police intimidation to the already long list of problems migrants face?
Recently, the migrant shelter Todos Por Ellos in Tapachula was subject to a police raid. According to Amnesty International, eight federal police officers told the shelter’s manager “that he would be detained, that migrants would be deported, and that they would ‘have the hell beaten out of them.'” Many shelter workers and residents now fear for their lives.
In the days following the incident, a formal complaint was lodged with the Attorney General. I urge you to pursue justice for Todos Por Ellos to the best of your ability, keeping in mind that article 76 of the Migration Act prohibits even the National Institute of Migration (Instituto Nacional de Migración, INM) from “[performing] migration checks on civil society organizations where migrants are hosted.”
Please respect the rights of the vulnerable–and of those who care for them.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: scazon via Flickr