World: Latin America & the Caribbean: Weekly Situation Update (21-27 December 2019) As of 30 December 2019

Latin America

KEY FIGURES

70% FEWER CENTRAL AMERICAN MIGRANTS IN MEXICO IN 2ND HALF OF 2019

86 CHILDREN IN HUEHUETENANGO, GUATEMALA, DROP OUT OF SCHOOL EVERY DAY DUE TO MIGRATION TO THE US

$1.1M CONTRIBUTED BY GERMANY TO WFP IN ECUADOR TO SUPPORT MIGRANT POPULATIONS

REGIONAL: MIGRANTS & REFUGEES

MEXICO

Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard reported on 27 December that the flow of Central American migrants to Mexico is down 70 per cent in the second half of 2019. Ebrard reported a steady monthly decline throughout the half, noting that the reduction from 144,000 migrants in the first half to 42,710 is the most drastic decrease Mexico has experienced in decades.

The Foreign Minister underscored the Mexico’s strict adherence to human rights in enforcing its new migration policy. According to officials from the Labor Ministry, only 3,500 migrants in northern Mexico are actively working, noting that half the migrants are underage and thus unable to integrate into the local labor market.

GUATEMALA

Education officials in the western highland department of Huehuetenango are concerned with the high number of children dropping out of the school system to migrate to the United States.
According to departmental data, 86 children drop out every day, a figure that officials fear may be due to families believing that they can use their children to gain easier entry into to the US.

Huehuetenango is one of the departments most affected by migration – the departmental head of education reports that the year-to-year numbers of dropouts grew from 11,731 in 2017 to 23,870 in 2018, a growth of more than 200 per cent.

Statistical authorities continue to work on data for 2019. The Ministry of Education acknowledges that extreme poverty is often the primary reason for school dropout and have worked to improve school feeding programs.

ECUADOR

Germany contributed US$1.1 million to WFP in Ecuador to support humanitarian response for vulnerable populations on the move.

The contribution seeks to help guarantee food assistance for pregnant and nursing women, households with children, people with serious illness and people with disabilities, among others, in the provinces of Azuay, Carchi, Chimborazo, Cotopaxi, El Oro, Esmeraldas, Guayas, Imbabura, Los Ríos, Manabí, Pichincha, Santo Domingo, Sucumbíos and Tungurahua.

WFP says that nearly 290,000 people have received food assistance in Ecuador during 2019. This is the second $1.1 million contribution from Germany following a similar contribution in 2018

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