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New Juarez migrant shelter opens; existing sites reach capacity

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico -- Juarez city officials struggling to find room for newly expelled migrant families have opened a new shelter that can house up to 400 people.

Kiki Romero is a gym that city officials are now utilizing to help with the demand of migrants coming into Juarez everyday from El Paso. At least 100 people are expelled every day into Juarez.

There are 102 cots in the shelter that can sleep four people each. Right now there are 70 migrants staying in the Kiki Romero shelter - but with the continuous flow of migrants coming to the city, the shelter could fill up quick.

Rogelio Pinal, the director of human rights for the City of Juarez, said that if there is more demand then the city can find more space.

"As long as there is support of the three orders of the government and the international organizations and associations, we could enable another space that the municipality has such as this gym, to have those people,” Pinal said.

The shelter is proving to be a much needed home for the migrants that are expelled with no where to go.

“Here we feel great like we’ve never felt before," Joselin Alvarez, a migrant woman from Guatemala said.

Alvarez left her country with her seven-year-old daughter and two-year-old son after extortion threats and covid destroyed her business.

She was told by people in Guatemala that the border was open, not knowing about the situation that was happening with the southern border.

"They should have told us that they were not going to accept us because that way one does not come here to suffer pain," Alvarez said through tears.

Now Alvarez sits in our cot at the shelter wondering how she will attempt to make it back to Guatemala.

“I am still waiting to make it out of here but I don’t know what to do yet. I don’t have communication so I don’t know what to do, but I do want to go back to my country," Alvarez explained.

Article Topic Follows: On the Border

Dylan McKim


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