AMERICA/MEXICO - "Do not close the homeless shelter for migrants" asks the Bishop of Celaya

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Guanajuato (Agenzia Fides) - The Bishop of the Diocese of Celaya, in the state of Guanajuato (Mexico), His Exc. Mgr. José Benjamín Castillo Plascencia, has publicly asked the Commune not to close the "Manos Abiertas a los Necesitados" homeless shelter for migrants and complained that the lack of a requirement, such as permission for the use of land, becomes an excuse for ceasing to provide such a necessary service.
The note sent to Fides from a local source reports the words of the Bishop during a meeting with reporters: "I believe that we all have to help and make things easier. I want to launch an appeal to the Commune to acknowledge that these social needs are important. I think we all need to help migrants, because it is not a simple problem. If, for some reason, that is not the right place, you must provide another place. Until now, our support to migrants has been insufficient, moreover, the problem of migration is already well-known and controversial. Yet we cannot establish our laws, and not even the United States of America... everything becomes complicated, we must try to solve the problem, and not providing this service is not a solution".
Guanajuato is the capital of the state of Mexico, and is located 370 km north-west of Mexico City, in 2005 the population was 70.798 inhabitants. At the end of April, a group of religious advocates of human rights and migrants, led by Father Alejandro Solalinde visited the hostel "Manos abiertas a los necesitados", which in little more than a year of service has welcomed more than 3,200 migrants in transit to the northern border and the United States.
In the city, there is no harassment of migrants, there are no reports of extortion against them or abuses by the police. Alberto Perez Quiroga, President of the safety of the city Commisssion told the local press: "In Celaya we work hand in hand with the Institute of emigration to address the issue of migrants. According to the report of Public Safety we have, migrants who are not authorized are sent back home, since many want to stay in Celaya. Our action is not specifically against immigrants, but against people who cannot sell or live on the street asking for money". (CE) (Agenzia Fides 17/06/2014)