Migration & Border Security

…putting human rights at the center of immigration policy

WOLA monitors the security situation along the U.S.-Mexico border, overseeing the U.S. security presence and exposing the border buildup’s often unseen consequences and costs. We work to increase awareness about dangerous U.S. deportation practices, the large number of migrants who die in the desert, and the challenges faced by local and state authorities in the identification and preservation of remains. We propose policy alternatives that will protect migrants’ rights, prevent deaths, and ensure that efforts to enhance border security are measured against the reality of the situation on the ground. At the same time, WOLA works to help address cross-border gun trafficking that fuels drug-related violence in Mexico.

Key Program Themes

U.S. Unsafe Deportation Practices

Nearly two million people have been deported from the U.S. since 2009, many to Mexico. Click here to see WOLA's research on current U.S. deportation practices that put these migrants at risk.

Border Security

Securing the border is often seen as a prerequisite for immigration reform, yet the costs of this buildup are often overlooked. Click here to see WOLA's work on security buildups along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Migrant Deaths along the U.S.-Mexico Border

Each year hundreds of migrants die attempting to cross the border. Click here to learn more about what WOLA is doing to prevent migrants deaths and increase efforts to identify the dead.

Gun Trafficking to Mexico

More than 60,000 people have died in drug-related violence in Mexico since 2006. Click here to see WOLA's work to advocate for policies that help combat illegal gun trafficking from the U.S. to Mexico as a way to address this violence.

Migration & Border Security News & Analysis

New Institutions in Mexico Could Expand Justice for Migrants

Analysis & Commentary
Every year, tens of thousands of migrants pass through Mexico on their journey north towards the United States, and they are routinely preyed upon by both criminal organizations and corrupt government officials in the country.

The Search for Justice: Crimes against Migrants and Refugees in Mexico

Video
Join us for a conversation with representatives of migrant shelters from different regions in Mexico who assist migrants in the search for justice.

New U.S.-Mexico Local Repatriation Arrangements are a Step Forward

Analysis & Commentary
The new Local Repatriation Arrangements signed by the U.S. and Mexico represent important efforts of both governments to curtail many of the deportation practices that negatively affect repatriated Mexican migrants.

A Future at Home: Investing in Youth Opportunity in Central America

Analysis & Commentary
Today, WOLA is releasing a report that focuses on the lack of opportunity for youth in the Northern Triangle of Central America. As the U.S. begins discussions on its FY2017 budget, the report sheds light on what needs to be done to provide opportunities for youth.