A group of LGBTQ migrants who split off from the main migrant caravan because of discrimination are the first to arrive in Tijuana, weeks ahead of the others.
NPR reports: ‘About 80 migrants, the majority of whom identify as LGBT, splintered off from the larger group in Mexico City after weeks of what they say was discriminatory treatment by local residents and other travelers, Honduran migrant Cesar Mejia told reporters at a news conference on Sunday. “Whenever we arrived at a stopping point the LGBT community was the last to be taken into account in every way. So our goal was to change that and say, ‘This time we are going to be first,’ ” Mejia said.’
Voice of San Diego added: ‘“In this massive exodus, LGBT people have always been present,” the migrants and advocacy group Diversidad Sin Fronteras wrote in a press release Friday. “As a community we have been organizing to support our needs and during our journey we have met and helped each other. We traveled together to care for each other, not only from the violence of the state and criminal organizations, but also from the violence from civilians migrating with us.” The LGBTQ migrants had organized within the caravan itself, electing leaders and taking their own census within the larger group. It found there were more than 120 LGBTQ people within the stadium where they had been staying. LGBTQ migrants in the larger caravan decided to take their fates into their own hands and figure out a way to more quickly arrive in Tijuana.’
Most are planning to request asylum in the U.S. based on the fact that they are persecuted in their home countries, although Trump last week moved to restrict asylum for those crossing the border from Mexico, Vox reports: ‘The policy itself was developed in just a few weeks, as a slow-moving crisis of resources on the US-Mexico border turned into a hot political issue thanks to President Donald Trump’s obsession with the migrant “caravan.” It became public on Thursday evening and Friday morning, before going into effect Friday at midnight. (Even as of late Friday, some asylum officers hadn’t received guidance about how to implement the new policy.) The policy has already been challenged in court by the ACLU and other immigration advocates, who hope that a federal judge in the Northern District of California will put the policy on hold as early as Tuesday.’