Presenting at the 11th Summer Institute on Migration and Global Health in June 2016

I am excited to be a presenter at the 11th Summer Institute on Migration and Global Health in Oakland in June. To learn more about this event, I include the press release below.

Oakland and Berkeley, California, USA

If you are interested in migration and health issues, this is an event for you. The Summer Institute on Migration and Global Health provides a special opportunity to learn about the many health topics that affect mobile populations across the globe. Twenty-one international experts from the U.S. and abroad will present updated and relevant information on the relationship between migration and health.  From climate change to mental health, carefully selected speakers will offer different perspectives of public health, public policy, and social sciences. The Institute also includes workshops, poster presentations, field trips and social events that allow for the creation of new professional relationships. 

A detailed agenda is available on the event’s website: www.regonline.com/MigrationHealth2016

More information about the Summer Institute and online registration is available below: 

Citado en reportaje de Hoy por Soudi Jimenez el 15 de Abril

Para leer todo el reportaje, “‘Solo te queda pedirle a Dios:’ padre que vive en zozobra por violencia en Centro America,” aqui es el link: http://www.hoylosangeles.com/noticias/local/hoyla-loc-solo-te-queda-pedirle-a-dios-padre-que-vive-en-zozobra-por-violencia-en-centro-america-story.html.

‘En el momento que la mayor ola migratoria de menores no acompañados se gestaba en Centro América, la investigadora estadounidense Elizabeth Kennedy se encontraba en El Salvador, llegó a esa nación en octubre de 2013 y permaneció ahí hasta finales del 2014.

Kennedy, originaria de Texas, estudia a la niñez migrante desde hace seis años respaldada por la Universidad Estatal de California en San Diego. En una de sus investigaciones revela que al menos 83 muertes ocurrieron desde enero de 2014 después de ser deportados a esa región.

Al conocer sobre la detención que viven cientos de menores, algunos con un encierro mayor a los 20 meses, la investigadora plantea que no se está enfocando en las necesidades de los niños; además, cuestiona que existan centros con hasta 700 adolescentes y que la atención no es la adecuada.

“No es la respuesta correcta para recibirlos”, aseveró Kennedy. “Mi mayor preocupación es por la salud mental dentro de las cárceles, son tratados como reos. Si la situación no es estable de donde vienen, como ocurre en la mayoría, se deprimen y quieren suicidarse”.

Este ambiente es el que está empujando a muchos jóvenes a firmar la salida que no es voluntaria. “No se trata simplemente de trasladarlos a un centro penal, los jóvenes vienen huyendo de traumas”, enfatizó la especialista advirtiendo que las autoridades deben procurar la reunificación.’

Citado en Hoy reportaje por Soudi Jimenez el 12 de Abril

Para leer el reportaje entero, “Exigen TPS que evite la deportacion de menores Centroamericanos,” aqui es el link: http://www.hoylosangeles.com/noticias/local/hoyla-loc-exigen-un-tps-a-barack-obama-para-evitar-deportacion-de-menores-centroamericanos-story.html.

“De acuerdo a un estudio publicado por la Universidad Estatal de San Diego, divulgado el año anterior, identifican a 83 inmigrantes centroamericanos que fueron asesinados desde enero de 2014, poco después de su regreso a los países del Triángulo Norte de esa región.

En el reporte, basado en informes de medios de comunicación locales, se detalla que 45 crímenes ocurrieron en el El Salvador, 35 en Honduras y tres en Guatemala.”

 

Quoted in Arizona Republic article by Daniel Gonzalez on 11 April

To read the entire article, “5 signs another surge of Central American migrants coming to U.S.,” click on this link: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/border-issues/2016/04/11/5-signs-another-surge-central-american-migrants-coming-us/82666830/ .

‘”I expect people to continue fleeing,” said Elizabeth G. Kennedy, a social scientist at San Diego State University.

She lived in El Salvador from October 2013 to December 2014 while conducting research on children and families fleeing violence.

“Their lives are at risk,” she said. “They are being threatened. They don’t feel safe. There is a lack of opportunities. Under those conditions, it is the human spirit to fight to survive, and that is what Salvadorans, Hondurans and Guatemalans are going to continue to do.”‘

Presentation at the American Association of Geographers in San Francisco on 30 March

On a panel with John R. Weeks and others, I presented further results from the interviews that Karla Castillo and I collected in El Salvador, entitled “Fleeing Violence in El Salvador’s “Violence-Free” Cities.”

To read more, you can access this link: http://meridian.aag.org/callforpapers/program/AbstractDetail.cfm?AbstractID=76298.

Press Release by America’s Voice on 23 February Cites Forthcoming Study

To read the entire press release, “America’s Voice Education Fund Applauds Activists Demanding End to Immigration Raids,” click here: http://americasvoice.org/press_releases/americas-voice-education-fund-applauds-activists-demanding-end-immigration-raids/.

“One comprehensive study by Elizabeth Kennedy, a San Diego State University social scientist, found that 83 deportees have been murdered upon their return to Central America since January 2014.”

Forthcoming study cited in Daily Beast article by Anna-Cat Brigida on 6 February

To read the entire article, “Deporting People to their Doom in Murderous Central America,” click here: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/02/07/deporting-people-to-their-doom-in-murderous-central-america.html.

“Eighty-three deportees were murdered in the Northern Triangle from January 2014 to September 2015, according to a forthcoming report by researcher Elizabeth Kennedy.”

Quoted in Dallas Morning News article by Dianne Solis on 2 February

To read the entire article, “New Central American migration wave? January detentions dip but year-over-year numbers remain high,” click on this link: http://thescoopblog.dallasnews.com/2016/02/january-detentions-of-central-americans-falls-from-december-but-year-over-year-numbers-remain-high.html/.

‘Elizabeth Kennedy, a migration researcher, also noted that El Salvador finished the year with a homicide rate higher than anything since the civil war ended in 1992. “Only Syria surpasses it. There is no doubt that people are fleeing. How many are being turned away in Mexico?”’

Citado en La Prensa Grafica reportaje por Amanda Hernandez Moreno el 27 de Enero

Para leer todo el reportaje, “Defensores de los inmigrantes senalan contradiccion en medidas de Obama,” aqui es el link: http://www.laprensagrafica.com/2016/01/27/defensores-de-los-inmigrantes-piden-a-obama-seguir-sus-propias-alarmas-migratorias.

“Por su parte, Elizabeth Kennedy, investigadora de California, ahondó en las razones que empujan a estos centroamericanos a emigrar a los Estados Unidos. Son las mismas causas que llevaron a la retirada de los Cuerpos de Paz y a la renovación de alerta de viaje hacia El Salvador. La investigadora dijo que más de la mitad de las personas que son deportadas son asesinadas a meses de haber regresado a su país de origen. Además, recalcó que el nivel de organización y de control que tienen las pandillas es tal que el Estado se ve incapacitado de actuar eficientemente para controlarlas y proteger a sus ciudadanos en el Triángulo Norte.”

Nota de aclaracion: No dije que “mas de la mitad de personas que son deportadas son asesinadas …” En ingles, dije que “Over half [of murdered deportees] were murdered within eight months of their reported deportation.” Entonces, en espanol, dije que entre las personas deportadas y asesinadas, mas de la mitad fueron asesinadas al dentro de ocho meses de haber regresado.

 

Speaker on Alianza Americas Call on 27 January

With Oscar Chacon of Alianza Americas, Carlos Dada of El Faro, and Esther Lopez of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), we spoke to press about continuing conditions in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. Below, I include the press release. This was one of the first in a series of events coordinated across the nation by Alianza Americas. Read more about that here: http://www.alianzaamericas.org.

Experts, Advocates Discuss Consequences of Obama Administration’s Conflicting Policy Toward Central America

Travel Advisories, In-Country Refugee Processing At Odds With Ramped Up Immigration Raids

Washington, DC—This afternoon, human rights, foreign policy, and labor experts gathered on a press call to parse through the increasingly complicated developments regarding the Obama administration’s policy toward Central America and treatment of recent immigrants from the region. As violence in the Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras has increased in recent months, the Obama Administration has taken several steps to acknowledge this uptick in violence as well as protect Americans living and working in the region. These precautions—travel advisories, suspension of Peace Corps operations in El Salvador, and most notably the expansion of in-country refugee processing—are entirely at odds with the administration’s recent immigration raids aimed at deporting women and children back to this very same region.

Experts discussed these inconsistencies and their dangerous implications for Central American refugees fleeing the region, as well as those already in the United States. Listen to a recording of today’s call here.

Oscar Chacón, Executive Director of Alianza Americas said, “We are indeed dealing with a humanitarian crisis in Central America. And it is one that we are not responding appropriately to. Instead, we are rounding people up and sending them back. In light of what we know about the region, this amounts to sending people back to their death. The Administration needs to reconsider their current policy approach. The real question is, are we going to protect, or are we going to deport, those whose countries are in no condition to take them back?”

Said Carlos Dada, former editor of El Salvador’s El Faro, “Central Americans are fleeing from places controlled by criminal organizations, where the presence of the state is almost non-existent. The crisis is not at the southern border, the crisis is what immigrants who reach the border are fleeing from. They are running away from extreme violence and—in El Salvador in particular—if you want to keep your children safe, if you want to see them become adults, there is no deterring you from trying to leave the place where your life is threatened, and provide a better future for your family. ”

Added, Esther LopezUFCW International Executive Vice President and member of the AFL-CIO Executive Council, “Our labor delegation traveled to Honduras to examine the crisis facing thousands of refugee children and their families – the evidence is overwhelming:  widespread labor and human rights violations, crime, repression, violence and corruption threaten and kill children and families – the U.S. immigration system fails to protect Central American refugees from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador.  We must demand protection not deportation from our government.”

Elizabeth Kennedy a researcher at San Diego State University and UC Santa Barbara, said The World Health Organization classifies a homicide rate higher than 10 per 100,000 as an epidemic, every bit as harmful to children, mothers, fathers and their communities as diseases like Ebola, swine flu, or Zika. El Salvador finished 2015 with a rate of 103, Honduras with a rate of 57, and Guatemala with a rate of 30. Parts of each country have double the national rate. These homicide rates are among the highest in the world—including war zones. El Salvador’s rate is second only to Syria’s. Honduras’ is in the top five, and Guatemala’s is in the top 20. Thus, the intensity of violence is beyond minimal. It is epidemic. This is an armed conflict… I’ve seen the look of many kids, moms, dads, brothers, sisters and friends who cannot sleep through the night, because they are unsure they’ll live through it. I’ve heard the whispers of people who don’t know who they can trust and believe that walls, streets, and alleys have ears. I’ve spoken to a man who told me he’d be fine after his deportation and was then murdered. To families who have fled six times in the country only to be found by the group threatening them. To boys who were beat not by gangs, but by police or military. These are refugees and they need our help.”