Posted: Tuesday, April 20, 2021. 2:12 pm CST.
By Zoila Palma: UNICEF reports that since the beginning of 2021, the number of migrant children in Mexico has gone from 380 to almost 3,500.
In Mexican shelters, children make up 30% of the populations. These include children from Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Mexico.
In addition, about half of the children have traveled without their parents to Mexico.
According to UNICEF, about 275 migrant children reach Mexico everyday waiting to cross into the United States of America.
UNICEF Regional director, Jean Gough says that most of the shelters are overcrowded and cannot accommodate the increasing number of children and families arriving daily.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and the increase in the arrival of unaccompanied minors, the Mexican assistance centers are strained.
UNICEF reports that it has recorded harrowing testimonies of sexual abuse, extortion, kidnapping and human trafficking, among other violations.
Some migrant women tearfully told UNICEF they were deprived of food, had their belongings confiscated, or slept on the floor, covering their children with their own bodies to keep them warm at night.
UNICEF has since called on the international community to place children and women at the heart of all investment plans across Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and southern Mexico, in efforts to create better living conditions and opportunities for communities.
The organization says that it has scaled up efforts to provide support to families and children that move across Central America.
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