The U.S. government is working with Latin American governments, civil society, and international organizations to address the root causes of irregular migration and to advance safe, orderly, humane migration management, said Deputy Assistant Secretary for Central America and Migration Eric Jacobstein.
One way the U.S. does this is to provide generously for the needs of refugees, migrants, and other vulnerable populations, including by supporting host communities across Latin America and the Caribbean.
“The U.S. is proud to be the largest single donor of humanitarian assistance for the Western Hemisphere,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary Jacobstein:
“In the past two years, the United States has provided more than $2.4 billion in humanitarian assistance to the region and nearly $3.7 billion in development, economic security, and health assistance across the Western Hemisphere.”
A second approach to managing the migration crisis includes the creation of additional lawful pathways to enter the United States, explained Deputy Assistant Secretary Jacobstein:
“Since our launch in June of the Safe Mobility Office initiative, over 2,000 individuals have arrived in the United States. This initiative facilitates expedited refugee processing via the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program and provides information and referrals to humanitarian parole, to family reunification programs, and to labor pathways. Hundreds of additional applicants are in the final stages of processing and will arrive in the United States in the coming weeks.”
Other expanded lawful immigration pathways include the extension of the Family Reunification Program to additional countries and the addition of tens of thousands of new H-2B labor visas, among other programs.
At the same time, the “U.S. continues to enforce consequences for migrants who cross our border irregularly,” warned Deputy Assistant Secretary Jacobstein. Since May 2023, Department of Homeland Security has returned more than 380,000 individuals.
“So, it’s really critical for people to understand that despite what human smugglers claim, the reality is that migrants who cross the U.S. border illegally and lack a lawful basis to remain will be quickly removed from the United States, and we are increasing the return to countries of origin,” he said.
Deputy Assistant Secretary Jacobstein, “urge(d) those who are considering irregular migration to seek information from official U.S. Government sources rather than embarking on the expensive, dangerous irregular migration journey to the north.”