Frosty Reception In TJ

A few days after the first of the migrant caravanners reached Tijuana, Mexico’s spirit of cooperation dissolved. Tijuana’s mayor described it as a “horde” of 2,000 Central American migrants that is overwhelming the city’s municipal resources and has troublemakers who should be expelled. Following skirmishes and verbal clashes between migrants and residents earlier in the week, Juan Manuel Gastélum told Milenio Televisión: “Tijuana is a city of migrants but we don’t want them like this.” He added: “Human rights people are going to come down on me, but human rights are for right-thinking people.” Mr. Gastélum claimed that “potheads” and “people who are bad for the townsfolk” were among the caravan. Five Central Americans have reportedly been arrested in Tijuana.

The first migrants to arrive got off to a rocky start, as they were a group of about 50 very flamboyant gays and transgenders. They wore makeup and insisted in walking up here in women’s shoes, some of them 3 inch heels. That was one reason why they were packed ont a bus. They immediately clashed with the locals near their camp at the beach at Playas de Tijuana, starting scary rumors about all migrants. some locals have shouted insults, hurled rocks and even thrown punches at migrants.

But there are thousands of job openings right now, particularly in the manufacturing and construction industries, in Tijuana, a metro area with up to 2 million residents.

“Anyone can find work in Tijuana right now,” the mayor said.

Some in Playas de Tijuana are upset because the caravan caused Trump to tighten border crossings by closing lanes some ports of entry, making life miserable for the estimated 30,000 Tijuana residents who work in the United States.

US border authorities are reportedly processing about 90 people a day, out of more than 3,000 on a list, and that list doesn’t include this latest push by an additional 6,000 to 9,000. That raises the prospect of a huge backlog building up in Tijuana as migrants arrive and are stuck. Tijuana has already absorbed about 3,000 Haitian migrants who remained in the city instead of trying to cross into the U.S. two years ago, and that went relatively smoothly.

“We are not against migration,” Ulises Araiza, President of the Association of Human Resources of Industry in Tijuana, told Reuters. “We know the situation that these people face in their country. But we also favor order so as to integrate them into the labor sector, because in Tijuana do we have a demand in the maquiladora industry for 5,000 people.”