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Tijuana women protest against treatment of migrant workers


Aired 4/19/09

Immigrants rights activists and women who intend to cross the border illegally protested in Tijuana today against the rising incidence of violence against female migrants. The group marched from a women's migrant shelter to the border fence and called on the Mexican government for help. KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson has details.

About 50 marchers prayed for the more than 400 women who've died crossing the border during the last eleven years.

Twenty-six-year old Zulma Escalante from Honduras led the group. She carried a cross made of tree branches to represent a bush in Mexicali where bandits hang the underwear of women they violate.

Escalante plans to cross illegally to work as a cleaning woman in Los Angeles to support her two children back home. She says she's aware women are routinely assaulted crossing the border. But she says the lack of opportunities in Honduras leaves her no choice.

She says the government doesn't care about poor people and doesn't give them work.

The group called on the Mexican government to arm the Mexican border patrol. Amy Isackson, KPBS News.

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