It’s not just residents who are adjusting to this dangerous escalation of violence in Mexico’s deadliest city. Now, entire industries are having to deal with doing business in harm’s way.
“Obviously for us, doing business in Juarez, it kind of changes a little, because we have to be more cautious,” said Jose Luis Mauricio. He is President of a group called La Red, or the Network. The group was formed by Mexican businessmen and professionals who run their businesses in Juarez from El Paso.
“We have to change our culture in terms of getting to the office,” Mauricio said. “We take different routes, sometimes even take different cars. We’re seeing who’s around before you park.”
The owners of El Paso businesses such as Crisostomo, Maria Chuchena, Garufa and Technology Networks and Services all have locations in Juarez. These business owners say if they do have to schedule a working dinner, you can bet it won’t be at nice Mexican restaurant.
“When you have dinners with customers, for instance, it has to be taken care of in the office or at places that nobody can actually see you,” Fernando Cortez said. He oversees businesses in El Paso and Juarez. He said he even worries about what he wears to work in Juarez.
“Obviously you don’t want to show that you may be the owner or that you’re somebody that may be important, so I don’t wear suits,” Cortez said.
But one thing member of the group refuse to do is abandon Juarez.
“We can’t jump off the ship just because it seems like its sinking,” Mauricio said. “We can’t.”