On the Border Between Two Americas - March 28, 2014
Border-patrol surge brings enforcement without accountability, putting politics ahead of people.
By Fernando Garcia
March 26, 2014
When Americans think about our southern border with Mexico, the first thing that comes to mind for many is, sadly, a lawless, desert region filled with drug runners and smugglers. This caricature of the border pervades the minds of many who live far from the region and certainly the political dialogue that exists in Washington today.
The reality is that our border communities are quintessential American communities. They are among the safest cities in the country. We are diverse in our populations and innovative in our approach to economic development and entrepreneurship; in many ways, we provide an insight into the future of the United States. In a report my organization recently released, “The New Ellis Island: Visions From the Border for the Future of America,” local law-enforcement officials affirm that “the crime rate in border counties is lower than in non-border counties and crime levels have been decreasing for years.”
Border Community Gathers to Welcome Congressmen Pearce (NM-2, R) and O’Rourke (TX-16, D) Border Accountability Bill - March 28, 2014
Simultaneous Press Conferences will be held at Congressmen’ District Offices on March 26th to recognize Historic and Unprecedented Effort to Bring Quality, Oversight and Accountability to Border Enforcement.
El Paso, TX/Southern New Mexico. In the midst of a national discussion over the actions and strategies of US border agencies and programs, early next week Congressmen Steve Pearce (NM-2 R) and Beto O’Rourke (TX-16 D) will be introducing the Border Accountability and Community Engagement bill. This legislation represents an unprecedented bi-partisan effort to create and enhance border oversight mechanisms for the action and strategies of federal law enforcement agencies working on border enforcement.
In El Paso, residents aren’t waiting for Congress to fix immigration - February 21, 2014
Grassroots efforts to improve relations between border officials and local community hold important lessons for reform
EL PASO, Texas — As 2013 drew to a close, volunteers for the Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR) fanned out into El Paso and the surrounding communities to collect stories of abuse and mistreatment by law enforcement officials. The annual effort seeks to establish accountability for officers working along the El Paso sector of the U.S.-Mexico border.
Amid the steady stream of complaints that rolled in, Fernando Garcia, the organization’s director, noticed a conspicuous absence of grievances against Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the El Paso County Sheriff’s Department. “I said, ‘This cannot be,”’ recalled Garcia. He extended the campaign for two weeks and told volunteers to focus on finding any potential complaints against Border Patrol, an arm of CBP. But once again, volunteers found no verifiable incidents of abuse. (more…)
BNHR Statement on Congressmen Pearce (NM-2, R) and O’Rourke (TX-16, D) - February 13, 2014
Bi-Partisan Proposal on Border Accountability and Stakeholder Engagement
Border communities are quintessential American communities. They are diverse in their populations, innovative in their approach to economic development and entrepreneurship, and, in many ways they provide an insight into the United States’ future.
Unfortunately, border communities have long felt the consequences of Congress’ “enforcement only” approach to immigration reform. Previous border surges have left in their wake an insufficiently trained Border Patrol force, insufficiently resourced ports of entry, and fiscally irresponsible strategies that do not help secure our nation and choke out the potential for more economic development.
15 Years of Protecting Rights and Dignity - February 8, 2014
In El Paso, Border Complaints Drop – Thanks to Organizing - February 5, 2014
By Brad Wong | Equal Voice News
The 2013 report from Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR) lists about two dozen incidents involving questionable law enforcement actions, immigration matters and Latino residents who live in and around El Paso, Texas.
As in: A person identified as “J.F.” reported on Feb. 20, 2013 that a police officer stopped him for a minor traffic infraction – but asked to see his social security number, said he would arrest him if he did not exit his car and threatened to summon U.S. immigration agents to the scene. (more…)
MIGRANT DEATHS AND THE HUMANITARIAN CRISIS AT THE BORDER - February 5, 2014
Press Conference at Border Fence and El Paso Film Premier of “Who is Dayani Cristal?”
February 2nd, 2014. El Paso, TX/ Southern New Mexico.
It has been 15 years since the Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR) began its struggle to ensure respect for human and civil rights of border residents and to warn about the humanitarian crisis of migrants dying while crossing the borderlands.
While it’s true that each year less and less migrants are attempting to cross the border illegally, it is also a very concerning fact that the rate of migrant deaths remains still. In the past 10 years alone, some 2,000 migrants -men, women, and children have died while attempting to reunite with family members. We cannot longer ignore that human lives are being lost every year due to the harsh and inhumane border policies that are not working and continue to kill people.
In an attempt to raise awareness, BNHR will be featuring the El Paso Premier Documentary of the film/documentary “Who is Dayani Cristal?” which in some way helps us understand the plight and challenges that hundreds of immigrants go through and gives a face to the humanitarian aspect that has been lost at the time of decision making in Washington.
Press Conference on Migrant Deaths (Testimonials)
Friday, February 7th at 2:00 p.m.
Border Fence in Anapra, at Sunland Park N.M.
El Paso Premier of “Who is Dayani Cristal?”
Friday, February 7th at 6:00 p.m.
Plaza Theater(125 Pioneer Plaza, El Paso, Tx).