Biden Mexico Visit a Missed Opportunity for Bold Collaboration on Rights-Respecting Migration Policies

January 10, 2023
Elyssa Pachico  | +1 503 347 23 29 | [email protected] 
Myneilles Negron | +1 703 585 6727 | [email protected]


On January 9-10, President Biden visited Mexico for the North American Leaders’ Summit, his first since becoming president and the first time a U.S. president has visited Mexico in nine years. A group of 94 civil society groups asked the leaders at the summit to adopt rights-respecting migration policies in a public letter, but the summit did not see much advancement in these areas.   


In response, Alianza Americas, a multiethnic and multiracial coalition of 56 grassroots organizations in 18 states fighting for equitable policies, issued the following reaction. 


“Unsurprisingly, this visit was a missed opportunity for the U.S. and Mexican governments to collaborate boldly on rights-respecting immigration policies,” said Rita Robles, coordinator for Mexico at Alianza Americas. “Especially with last week’s announcement of the expansion of deportations under Title 42, it’s clear that the Biden administration wants to continue evading its asylum obligations by outsourcing the responsibility to Mexico. This is a country that last year registered its second-highest number of asylum applications ever, and the highest-ever number of people deported and deprived of liberty for migration-related reasons. 


“Enlisting Mexico to act as another type of ‘border’ wall, focused on deporting and detaining migrants and asylum seekers, is not an approach that allows for effective and rights-respecting solutions,” added Robles. “Mexico has no plan and no public policy for receiving people deported back to its border cities. Nor is there any kind of strategy for guaranteeing migrants’ security, or upholding their fundamental rights to work, housing, health, and education, as people and families work to resolve their immigration status. Nor has the López Obrador government shown any interest in implementing a program that would allow people to regularize their status, which would be a massive relief for the thousands of people currently living undocumented in Mexico,” said Robles. 


“These strategies of deterrance push people into taking ever-more dangerous migration routes and relying on human smugglers. Instead of these failed policies of detention and deportation that push people into danger and strengthen human traffickers, Mexico and the U.S. should be seeking ways to collaborate more closely to address the root causes of migration,” added Robles.




Alianza Americas is the premier transnational advocacy network of Latin American migrant-led organizations working in the United States, across the Americas, and globally to create an inclusive, equitable and sustainable way of life for communities across North, Central and South America. In 2022, Alianza integrated with, establishing a stronger digital organizing powerhouse.

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