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Mexican railway forced to suspend trains after numerous deaths from migrants jumping on board

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A railway was forced to temporarily suspend train runs in northern Mexico due to the dangers and injuries occurring from numerous migrants attempting to climb aboard its freight cars.

The Mexican railway Ferromex said it had to halt 60 trains carrying cargo that would fill a whopping 1,800 tractor trailers due to the at least “half-dozen regrettable cases of injuries or deaths” of migrants jumping on the freight cars, the company said in a statement. Many migrants even hopped on moving freight cars “despite the grave danger that represents.”

International trade will be affected by the halt, and the impact of the train stoppage will be “very important,” said Ana Bertha Gutiérrez, the international trade coordinator for the Mexican Institute for Competitiveness.

The Associated Press reports:

The company said there were about 1,500 people gathered at a rail yard in the city of Torreon, in the northern border state of Coahuila. The company also reported about 800 migrants waiting at the freight yards in Irapuato, in the north-central state of Guanajuato.

About 1,000 people were reported to be riding freight cars on the train line that connects the city of Chihuahua and the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez.

Gutiérrez noted the impact could be felt in industrial states like Nuevo Leon, Baja California and Chihuahua, given their links to the U.S. market.

Migrants have long used the trains, known collectively as “The Beast,” to hitch rides from as far south as Oaxaca state to the U.S. border. About a decade ago, the Mexican government briefly staged raids on the trains to discourage the practice, but later largely abandoned the effort, the Associated Press added.

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education

Report: Denver area migrants cost $340 million to shelter, educate

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A report by the free-market Common Sense Institute found the more than 42,000 migrants who have arrived in Denver over the last year and a half have cost the region as much as $340 million. The city of Denver, local school districts, and the region’s health-care system have spent between $216 million and $340 million combined to shelter, feed, clothe, and educate the migrants, and to provide them with emergency medical care.

National Review explains the report builds off a previous report from March that conservatively found that the migrants had cost the region at least $170 million. “Costs are never localized,” said DJ Summers, the institute’s research director. “They expand outward.”

Democratic leaders are being blamed for their welcoming posture toward immigrants generally, and their sanctuary-city policies, which curtail law enforcement’s ability to cooperate with federal immigration agents. Since late December 2022, at least 42,269 migrants — or “newcomers” as Denver leaders call them — have arrived in the city, adds National Review.

The Common Sense Institute report found that the migrant crisis has also hit local emergency rooms hard with extensive expenses. Since December 2022, migrants have made more than 16,000 visits to metro emergency departments. At an estimated cost of about $3,000 per visit, that has resulted in nearly $48 million in uncompensated care.

Summers said those costs are “stressing existing health care organizations,” but they also indirectly hit residents in their pocketbooks through increased insurance prices.

Metro school districts have endured the biggest financial hit — estimated between $98 million and $222 million — according to the Common Sense Institute report. The large range in costs is due to the difficulties researchers had identifying exactly how many new foreign students are tied to the migrant crisis.

The researchers found that since December 2022, 15,725 foreign students have enrolled in local schools. Of those, 6,929 have come from the five countries most closely identified with the migrant crisis — Venezuela, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.

On average, it costs a little over $14,000 to educate a student for a year in a Denver-area public school, but Summers said migrant students likely cost more.

“They have transportation needs that are different, they have acculturation needs that are going to be different, language assistance needs that are going to be different,” he said. “Many of them might need to get up to speed in curriculum. They might need outside tutoring.”

Earlier this year, Colorado lawmakers approved $24 million in state funding to help school districts statewide plug budget holes related to the migrant students.

Summers said the updated Common Sense Institute tally is likely still missing some costs related to the ongoing migrant crisis.

“There are definitely additional costs. We just don’t have a great way to measure them just yet,” he said, noting legal fees, crime, and unreported business and nonprofit expenses.

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