The Mesoamerican region experienced a migration crisis in 2016 with the arrival of more than 25 thousand migrant people from the Caribbean, Asia and Africa.
In view of that experience, and to strengthen national responses to migratory crises such as this, meetings were held in June and July between Panama’s Ministry of Public Security and IOM. These meetings were conducted under the Mesoamerica Program, with the participation of the Inter-Institutional Technical Committee, with the goal of developing a training manual which sets out a contingency plan and standard operating procedures (SOP) applicable to mixed migratory flows in transit through Panama.
Panama City, Republic of Panama. On the 28th and 29th of June, the National Commission against Human Trafficking held a technical meeting to prepare a National Plan against Human Trafficking for 2017-2022, and to review the Action Protocol for the Unit for the Identification of and Assistance to Victims of Human Trafficking and the Model for the Identification of and Assistance to Victims of Human Trafficking.
The Mesoamerica Program supports efforts made by the Workgroup on Comprehensive Protection for Children in San Pedro Sula, Honduras
Since March 2017, the Mesoamerica Program has had a permanent presence through a local partner, in San Pedro Sula, Honduras’ second-biggest city and an area characterized by having high migratory flows.
“Before taking the first step, inform yourself”: Communities in Mesoamerica act for a regular and safe migration
Community leaders in Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras and Costa Rica, with IOM and community art groups, worked together to offer the people from territories with high rates of migration, a series of awareness-raising activities on the risks associated with irregular migration.
IOM initiates workshops in the region to include measures against trafficking in persons in emergency responses
The International Organization for Migration organized in Nicaragua, with the authorities of the Coalition against Trafficking in Persons of the municipality of Chinandega, a workshop for the strengthening of capacities to prevent cases of trafficking in persons in emergency contexts.
Three girls and their mother, a family of Costa Rican and Nicaraguan origin, were able to return to Costa Rica after living during more than a year in Chile in precarious conditions.
IOM, civil society and governments of Mesoamerica discusses the challenges to protect LGBTI Migrants
More than 50 LGBTI activists, government officers, and representatives from non-governmental organizations from the seven countries in Mesoamerica met on from the 13th to 15th of June in Guatemala to strengthen their capacities and discuss joint strategies for the defense and promotion of the human rights of migrant lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans populations.
The modernization of migration management through a new law project; the development of manuals and protocols for the attention of migrant children and adolescents; a pilot project to provide identification cards to children and adolescents who live in border communities; and the provision of first-aid kits to migrants are some of the accomplishments highlighted by the Salvadorian Authorities, thanks to the support of the Mesoamerica Program.
On the 5th of May, representatives from governmental institutions and non-governmental organizations from Honduras and Guatemala, linked to migratory issues, met in the municipality of Puerto Barrios, Department of Izabal, Guatemala, to identify the strengths and challenges of the actions implemented in the border between both countries, and explore possible areas of collaboration at the local and cross-border level.
The countries in the Mesoamerica region are replicating a specialized course regarding migrant children, resulting in officers who are continuously better equipped to face the challenged inherent in offering adequate attention to the thousands of girls, boys, and adolescents migrating in the region.