Mexico starts campaign urging employers to hire refugees


U.S. asylum-seekers walk away from Mexican immigration offices after they were returned by U.S. authorities to wait in Mexico under the so-called Remain in Mexico program, in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Wednesday, July 17, 2019. Asylum-seekers still waiting to begin the process grappled to understand what a new U.S. policy that all but eliminates refugee claims by Central Americans and many others meant for their bids to find a better life in America.(AP Photo/Christian Chavez)

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico’s Labor Department and the U.N. refugee agency launched a campaign Thursday to encourage employers to hire refugees amid a spike in asylum and refugee requests.

The Labor Department said the program aims to triple the number of refugees finding legal work in Mexico, “in states where the refugee population does not compete for jobs with the local people.”

Mexico saw requests for asylum or refugee status skyrocket from 2,137 in 2014 to 70,302 in 2019.

The department opened an information campaign describing the advantages of hiring refugees and advising employers on what documents they should or shouldn’t ask job-seekers for. For example, the department says employers shouldn’t ask for specific identification documents from refugees’ home countries, given that some had to flee without them.

It stresses that as job candidates, refugees are “resilient people who are prepared to face challenges.”

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