With every passing day, the United States is becoming a less appealing destination for immigrants. But that hasn’t stopped immigrants from looking even further north for a potential home. In December, Canada stopped requiring visas for visiting Mexican citizens, which has created a surge of immigrants to that country.
According to the Washington Post, the number of immigrants detained at the Mexico-U.S. border has declined nearly 38 percent since February of 2016.
Over the same period, the number of immigrants living in the U.S. seeking asylum in Canada has increased by 212 percent. Many of these U.S.-based Mexican immigrants are likely choosing a life in Canada over the uncertainty that comes with staying in President Trump’s America.
Many immigrants see President Trump’s immigration policies as a reason to avoid the U.S.
In an interview with Reuters, 26-year-old Mexican immigrant Cenobio Rita explained that after a recent deportation from the U.S., he now had his sights set on immigrating to Canada: “I want to go to Canada with my passport. For those without documents, I think (the United States) is over. Now it’s Canada’s turn.”
Though Canada has relaxed its requirements for Mexican immigrants, many hurdles still exist.
Even with an Electronic Travel Authorization form — a tourist permit — immigrants still face a struggle to find work. Immigrants using ETAs to enter the country are not legally authorized to work without a work permit given to them by an employer. Canadian officials even employ strict searches to ascertain whether or not Mexican visitors are there as tourists or are there in search of work and a residence.
Despite these hurdles, more and more migrants are seriously considering Canada as an alternative over the U.S.
Read more about the migrants making their way to Canada in this story by Reuters.