In the middle of November I heard an episode of This American Life that detailed the lives of migrants in camps on our southern border - specifically in Matamoros right on the other side of Brownsville. It was beyond disturbing. It talked about how there was a basic lack of humanitarian aid - a "lack of predictable food and water and sanitation, five toilets where there should be 125, no proper tents for people." One woman asked the nurse for condoms so that when she was sexually assaulted again, she could ask her attacker to wear a condom.
It broke my heart.
The same nurse who spoke about the horrendous conditions at Matamoros said that she had been in refugee camps in Syria, Iraq and Bangladesh and this one was the worst. People are frequently kidnapped and no record is kept of migrants.
I can't imagine living in those conditions.
The episode of This American Life is heartbreaking - but I recommend it if you can stomach it.
After the episode, I found an organization that operates within Matamoros and protects the migrants. Currently they are seeking donations for infrastructure - I donated 5% of November sales to them.
For more info about the Resource Center for Asylum Seekers in Mexico check out these links
The image is from the Resource Center Matamoro's Facebook Page