For some members of the migrant caravan, the discrimination started way before they ever reached the southern border. A small group of LGBTQ migrants, who splintered off from the larger caravan, say they had no choice but to do so after experiencing bigotry from their fellow travelers.
Now after several weeks of traveling from Central America, this group of asylum seekers has reached Tijuana, Mexico's gateway city into California. Even when they were just walking distance to the American border they were met by angry residents,
upset that members of the LGBTQ community were able to rent a house to stay in just next door.
LGBTQ members of a previous caravan that came in April also experienced hatred and violence. The house they had rented was robbed and set on fire,
targeted because the people living there were "different."
This group of 80 asylum seekers will have to wait to even be interviewed by Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officials. But with a backlog of around 2000 people, officials say they aren't likely to even be interviewed until the end of the year.
While a month and a half may not seem like much, the men and women in this group of 80, even after leaving the dangers of their home country, have had to deal with the constant threat of verbal and physical attacks. They are so close to safety, but still not safe — surrounded by people hostile to them.
These men and women face extra threats and should be given special consideration when considering their asylum status. That's why we are asking (CBP) to give them expedited interviews and asylum consideration. Help bring the "Caravan 80" to safety. Sign the petition and support asylum for the LGBTQ caravan members.
Photo credit: Diego Cambiaso