Brazilian Immigrants Requesting More Asylum Status in The US

Numbers are still well below that of Central American countries

Paula Moura
New Jersey

The number of Brazilians arriving in the US at the border with Mexico and asking for asylum has increased since the beginning of the year.

The deportation procedures opened in US immigration courts involving Brazilian citizens now total 3,429 cases from October 2018 to May 2019, and the number is expected to increase until the end of the current fiscal year in September.

The numbers for 2019 (so far) and 2018 (4,890 procedures) are well below that of 2005, the year of the largest Brazilian immigration to the US: 28,135. After this period, however, deportations decreased to less than 1,000 cases in 2014.

Numbers are still well below that of Central American countries - ALFÂNDEGA E PROTEÇÃO DE FRONTEIRAS DOS EUA

The data was obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request by the Syracuse University TRAC program. The numbers mainly represent asylum applications at the border but also, in much lower numbers, requests from people who traveled to the United States by plan and were eventually detained.

Compared to Central American countries, Brazilian immigration to the US is insignificant, but it is among the seven largest nationalities of immigrants seized at the border, according to Jeanne Batalova, a researcher at the Migration Policy Institute in Washington. Police on the southern US border seized 227,073 Central American citizens in 2018 and 1,504 Brazilians.

Many Brazilians come with their children because they receive recommendations that they will spend less time in temporary detentions and can wait for the decision on their cases in freedom.

Some stay a few days in these places, crowded and with poor hygiene.

Others go to family processing centers. When immigrants bring children who are not their children, they go to shelters as unaccompanied minors.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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