Susana (name changed to protect her identity) will have try again to make the journey to the United States with her son Daniel, 16. Both left everything they had in El Salvador to escape because a gang threatened to kill the boy for refusing to be a gang member.
Officials at the Salvadoran Foreign Ministry do not have accurate data on the number of children who are traveling to the United States illegally at the hands of smugglers. The Vice Minister for Salvadorans Abroad, Liduvina Magarín, recently visited 12 sites that function as shelters, detention centers, and migrant processing centers located in the southern U.S. border. In a single day, these places received 310 Salvadoran children. Given the traffic and movement of people in recent months, it is speculated that the daily number of children passing through that border is between 500 and 600 Salvadoran children who have been sent with coyotes to the United States.
The women of the Movement for Justice in El Barrio–a community-based organization led by immigrant women in New York– and the Zapatista women of La Realidad are two examples of how women in struggle all over the world are coming together to inspire and learn from each other, and how, in the process, they are transforming the world.
Selena is a young woman born into Zapatismo and brought up in and with a Zapatista autonomous education. She knows no gender or age restrictions. She was appointed to a post that is indispensable to the survival of the collective–to register facts and occurrences and then share with the community what she has heard, discovered and learned. Nobody doubts her truth or integrity, her strength or the fidelity of the information she communicates. She was trained for this. The Assembly chose her for this role because of these qualities.
They can’t stay and they have nowhere to go. Forced out by poverty and the threat of imminent death in their countries, extorted by organized crime, kidnapped and executed in the transit countries and deported if they make it to their destination.
Subcomandante Marcos no longer exists. The Zapatistas resolved to destroy him, just as they decided to create him during the January 1994 uprising.” Exclusive report of the Americas Program from La Realidad, Chiapas.
There’s been a blitz of stories over the past couple of weeks on child migrants arriving on the U.S.’s southern border. It’s important that these children do not remain invisible. But most of these mainstream press stories are telling half-truths about child victims, while muddling or downright manipulating the question of who and what is responsible.