Honduras and El Salvador have high murder rates. Drugs are a big part of the crime in those countries. Gangs try to recruit young people to be part of the drug trade. Why the gangs murder so many is not clear.
People are fleeing those nations. Most of the refugees come from slum areas that are dangerous. The people seeking asylum tell stories about living in fear of the gangs.
The U.S. treats those who are in fear for their lives as refugees. Refugees have legal status. It is tough to get through the system. President Obama wants to make it easier
When refugees arrive at a U.S. border, they must get permission to enter. If a youngster arrives alone, the child can enter. It is harder for families just to walk across the border. Agents question the families.
Families must prove they are in danger. They must prove they are not terrorists. Some have children that are already living in the United States. Most of those entering the country must go through the court system.
The U.S. will now make it easier to reunite families. It will change some of its procedures.
Costa Rica has said it will work with those trying to flee Honduras and El Salvador. It will make it faster to send some refugees back home. And make it easier to send some forward. The U.N. will set up shop in the Central American nations. It will process some people before they leave their country.
Advocates say reuniting children and parents is a good goal. Republicans say they oppose the effort. Critics say Republicans do not understand the reasons refugees keep coming. They are not seeking jobs. They are fleeing from danger.
The U.S. is also trying to help the Central American countries reduce crime. Some say things are improving.
Helping families to resettle is a hard task. President Obama is trying to make it move faster.
Source: The New York Times July 26, 2016