(CNN) — The Joe Biden administration describes its “no-compromise” approach to tackling the root causes of migration from Central America, but nearly two months after Vice President Kamala Harris made a trip to the region, its plan lacks new details.
Senior administration officials extensively outlined the pillars of the Biden administration’s plan on Wednesday, including addressing economic insecurity and inequality, fighting corruption, promoting respect for human rights, countering and preventing violence, and addressing sexual violence. , gender and domestic.
“For this strategy to be successful, we will have to make a sustained effort, which is hard work over time, but also an uncompromising approach to having an impact on the ground on the people of the region who are suffering so much harm,” said an official, admitting that it will be a long-term job.
The government’s scheme and approach comes after a surge in migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border became a political problem earlier this year, overwhelming border facilities and making headlines because of poor conditions. The gravity of the situation prompted President Joe Biden in late March to turn to Harris to oversee efforts with Central American countries to stem the flow of migrants to the southern border of the United States, mimicking Biden’s own efforts in 2014 and 2015. .
“I asked the vice president today, because she is the most qualified person to do it, to lead our efforts with Mexico and the Northern Triangle, and the countries that can help, they need help to stop the movement of so many people, stop the migration to our southern border, “Biden told reporters at the time.
An official said Wednesday that the administration studied Biden’s previous efforts to assess what was successful and what areas could be improved and built on. Officials cited ongoing consultations with people in the region, civil society groups and governments, associations that Harris highlighted in a coverage message on the strategy.
“As of this writing, we have already received commitments from the governments of Mexico, Japan, and Korea, and from the United Nations, to join the United States in providing assistance to the region,” Harris said in the message. “Our administration also works hand in hand with foundations and nonprofit organizations to accelerate efforts in Central America.”
Since March, the US has allocated more than US $ 250 million in humanitarian aid, provided more than 10 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to the Northern Triangle, and contracted with the private sector to make additional investments in the region. .
The initial group of 12 companies and organizations that committed to the effort “offered to provide US $ 750 million in resources and established a non-profit organization to support economic development efforts in the region: the Alliance for Central America.” according to the strategy just launched. “These initial commitments will provide financial services to small business owners, Internet access and digital banking to rural communities, housing for low-income families, and reduced barriers to higher education.”
Senior government officials also anticipated a “collaborative migration management strategy” that involves, in part, making legal pathways to the United States and other countries more accessible, either through labor channels or by expanding resettlement.
“It really is based on this idea that as we seek to improve conditions on the ground in Central America and generate hope under the leadership of the vice president, we understand that there will continue to be demand to migrate,” said an official.
Arrests of migrant families have risen in recent months even as the Biden administration has tried to dismantle several of the hardline immigration policies championed by former President Donald Trump.
In June, the Border Patrol detained more than 50,000 migrant families, up from 40,815 in May, according to the latest data available from US Customs and Border Protection.
The tense situation has led Harris and his staff to emphasize that she does not manage the southern border in the face of criticism from Republicans.
In one of the latest indications of the Biden administration’s caution over migrants, including those seeking asylum, traveling to the southern U.S. border, the Biden administration said earlier this week that it plans to accelerate deportations. of some migrant families that cross the US-Mexico border. And when asked during a CNN forum last week about Harris’s “don’t come” message to migrants, Biden reiterated that “they shouldn’t come.”
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism