Life of a Migrant
Migrants are people who leave their country voluntarily to start a new life in a new land. They might do that for work, to study, or to live closer to family and friends. Over the past few years, the borders of the countries have not been permeable to the migrants, which might be a question of their national identity. It is alright if the Government wants to regulate who they wish to let enter their premises and who they don’t.
Well, that also raises a question on the equality of human rights. By this, they are only looking after the equality of their fellow citizens. Earlier, people used to practice hospitality, welcoming strangers and offer help who are in terrible situations and, seeking refuge. But since the time nationalism has become popular, people have started to think that the migrants are trying to invade their space or possibly pose a threat. They consider them as outsiders because of a different cultural background.
Challenges faced by the migrants in the past:
The United States is considered to be a land of opportunities and freedom. Well, it is not true for everyone. When Trump came into power, his biggest promise was to not let the US be a ‘migrant camp’. In the year 2000, 1.6 million migrants entered the US-Mexico border and the number drastically reduced over the past 10 years. According to the Zero tolerance policy, every single person (adult) who has crossed the border without a record of the entry (undocumented) will be criminally prosecuted.
As a result of which thousands of children were separated from their families, without a regular supply of toothbrushes, soap, had no food to eat, and left alone in a jail cell away from the people who cared for them. Mostly the migrants were from Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. They had to travel 1500 kilometers to reach Texas which is the shortest route to the United States. They had to face extortion, kidnapping, physical and sexual assault, human trafficking, and other cruel treatments which made their journey even worse.
The La Bestia trains carried these migrants where some fell of and lost their limbs and some even died. Criminal gangs boarded the trains and charged $100 USD and if they refused, they were thrown off the trains or beaten up till they died.
Similar was the case when the European Union passed a law under which they tried to stop the migrants from entering the European border. Migrants from across Africa who came to seek a job were kept as prisoners in Agadez, niger. 20-30 people kept in a single room.
I strongly feel these people who leave their country and enter into a new land altogether have already so much to face. They experience a difference in language, food, culture and still try to adjust to it. But they are always made to feel like an out-group. We must educate the people to accept them as one of their kind so that they don’t face any discrimination. We must understand that they are not there to pose any danger rather live a normal life.
The Newcomer’s High School in the US has students from 50 different countries speaking 60 different languages. Everyone had a different migration story and how they struggled to settle in the US. The school organized an event where they called the students from St. Duke’s where they interacted with them and shared their stories, Research papers were published so that people get an insight into their situation. This is how we can start educating the teenagers as well as the youth to end this norm of national identity.