Mexican companies demand government criminal background checks for asylum seekers

Migrants of different nationalities queue outside the Mexican National Institute of Migration in Tapachula, Chiapas State, Mexico, on June 20, 2019. - Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and his Salvadoran counterpart Nayib Bukele are expected to meet in Tapachula, in the southern state of Chiapas -- the entry point for many Central Americans trying to reach the United States, amid a migration crisis in the region. (Photo by Alfredo ESTRELLA / AFP) (Photo credit should read ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP/Getty Images)
(FILE PHOTO by Getty)

It appears that far-left Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s bleeding-heart liberalism is not shared by the Latin American nation’s manufacturers.

On Tuesday, Reuters reported that some Mexican manufacturers refuse to hire asylum seekers unless the president’s administration first performs criminal background checks on them.

The report was issued four days after Obrador announced that he plans to supply 40,000 factory jobs to asylum seekers, including those asylum seekers waiting in northern Mexico for their asylum requests to be processed in the United States.

But according to Reuters, a slew of employees are either demanding or “urging the government to conduct background checks and regularize their immigration status to make sure gang members are not among the job seekers.”

“Employers are worried … because there’s no register for undocumented migrants to see if they’ve got criminal records in their homelands, if they’re members of the Mara Salvatrucha or some other gang,” Eduardo Ramos, the president of the employers’ association Coparmex, said.

Their concerns echo those of U.S. President Donald Trump, who’s been branded as an anti-brown racist and xenophobe because of his concerns over gang-affiliated asylum seekers.

“I look at some of these asylum people, they’re gang members,” he said during a tour of the southern U.S. border in April. “They’re not afraid of anything. They have lawyers greeting them. They read what lawyers tell them to read.”

He added that, oftentimes, asylum seekers are scammers.

“It’s a scam. It’s a hoax. I know about hoaxes. I just went through a hoax,” he said.


Yet just like the left-wing activists here in the States dismissing the president’s factually-backed concerns, the left-wing activists in Mexico have likewise dismissed the concerns of manufacturers.

“It’s so illogical to think that people asking for asylum have criminal records, since they know they’ll face double scrutiny [in the United States and Mexico],” Oscar Misael Hernandez, a left-wing activist with Colegio de la Frontera Norte (The College of the Northern Border), said to Reuters.

His statement was illogical and non-factual.

During just one weekend last July, U.S. authorities apprehended SIX gang members and/or convicted criminals who were attempting to exploit America’s lax asylum laws to gain asylum. Two were MS-13 gang members, one was a Zetas cartel gang member, another was an 18th Street gang member and the final two were child molesters/abusers.

Now fast-forward to last month, when an MS-13 gang member was caught trying to use an 18-month-old child with chickenpox to make a claim for asylum.

“Cases like this demonstrate the real danger that exists to children in this disturbing new trend,” HSI Acting Executive Associate Director Alysa Erichs said at the time. “And while we have seen egregious cases of smugglers renting and recycling children, this case involving a six-month-old infant is a new low – and an unprecedented level of child endangerment.”

Gang bangers have also been found among the caravans of illegal aliens that keep arriving at the southern U.S. border.

But the issue regarding manufacturing in Mexico isn’t one of just concerns about criminality. It’s also one of concerns about international compliance.

“Luis Hernandez, president of manufacturing industry chamber INDEX in the border city of Tijuana, said companies run the risk of falling out of compliance with existing international agreements unless background checks are run on prospective employees,” Reuters notes.

“Many Mexican firms are certified by the Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which requires companies to only employ individuals whose backgrounds have been verified.”

“We don’t want to take the risk that the federal government comes to audit us, the state government audits us and because we hired someone, we’re not following the rules,” Hernandez said.


This isn’t to say that Obrador’s plan is necessarily a bad one; it’s just one in need of modifications. Reuters notes that the goal of providing jobs to 40,000 asylum seekers is “to ease pressure on overcrowded [U.S. Customs and Border Protection] shelters on the border and comes as public support for the migrants is waning.”

The goal also is to alleviate Mexico’s own labor shortage.

“According to INDEX, more than 60,000 jobs need filling in the manufacturing and exporting industries in Mexico’s northern border states,” Reuters points out.

The plan may very well be a part of the deal Trump reached with the Mexican government last month after he threatened to institute crippling tariffs on the nation.

The problem is that the Mexican president didn’t take into consideration how the very companies that would be forced to hire these asylum seekers would respond.



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Vivek Saxena


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