Photos: Matamoros, Mexico Camp

“An estimated 1,200 refugees living in tents on the Matamoros side of the Gateway International Bridge were unequipped to wait out an overnight downpour of freezing rain and heavy winds as temperatures in the Rio Grande Valley plummeted into the low 40s this week.

Tarps and garbage bags were tied over the tops of the dwellings. In many cases, modification still did not prevent water from seeping in and soaking clothing, shoes, and Mylar blankets given to families by volunteers to stay warm.

By Friday morning, concrete curbs were covered with mud scraped from shoes as people braved the cold, walking back and forth from the river to get water from tanks. Some climbed down the steep, slippery bank and waded in the frigid water, scrubbing clothing clean.”

Erin Sheridan // The Brownsville Herald

A collection of photographs from a camp of asylum seekers in Matamoros, Mexico at the entrance to the Gateway International Bridge from Oct. 27 – Nov. 14, 2019.

Asylum seekers who arrive at ports of entry along the U.S/Mexico border are returned to the streets of Mexico while their cases are adjudicated in U.S. immigration courts as a result of the Trump administration’s Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP, “Remain in Mexico” policy).

MPP was announced in December 2018 and was officially implemented in late January 2019, though local volunteer networks say that groups of migrants fleeing violent conditions began waiting on the bridge as early as June of the previous year.