Dozens of migrants were found dead Monday evening in a semi-truck in San Antonio, Texas, and the death toll keeps rising

By Alexandra Martinez, Prism

The historic migrant death crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border continues to grow. On Monday evening, 46 migrants were found dead in a semi-truck in San Antonio, Texas. As of Tuesday evening, the death toll had risen to 51, according to Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. Sixteen people, including 12 adults and four children, were initially found alive and taken to medical facilities, according to San Antonio Chief Charles Hood. Twenty-two of the people who died were Mexican nationals, seven were from Guatemala, and two were from Honduras. Authorities have yet to confirm the nationalities of the remaining victims.

Texans brought prayer candles, bottles of water, and religious icons to a makeshift memorial at the site where 46 migrants were declared dead Monday

What is being called the deadliest “human smuggling” case in modern U.S. history and the largest migrant mass casualty event, is the latest in a series of increasingly frequent fatal incidents deaths at the border. Immigration advocates say deterrent policies like “Remain in Mexico” and Title 42 have pushed migrants to seek dangerous forms of migration, and risk their lives in the process.

“Our hearts go out to all of those affected by this horrific tragedy. We mourn for those who lost their lives, and send well wishes to those in recovery,” said Bruna Sollod, the senior communications and political director for United We Dream, in a statement. “This is one of the deadliest incidents of attempted migration in recent history and it was completely preventable. People will always move, and our government has a responsibility to ensure that people are able to do so safely and with dignity.”

While U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has not reported the number of deaths across the entire border since 2020 (despite being required to do so), according to the Washington Office of Latin America’s Advocacy for Human Rights in the Americas, there have been 10 drownings in El Paso’s irrigation canals since June 9 alone. Since October 2021, CBP has reported 14,278 “search and rescue efforts”, exceeding the 12,833 efforts in all of fiscal year 2021. CBP has reported encountering more than 1 million migrants at the southwest border since January.

Read More