Mexicans in the UK

There are many reasons why, in recent years, migratory movements are growing and the number of immigrants is increasing in developed countries. According to the United Nations, in 2015, there were 244 million international migrants, which is 3.3% of the world’s total population. With respect to the last census conducted in 2019 the UN reported that the Mexicans in the UK were distributed as follows; males 531,912 females 528,795, total population 1,060,707, which represents 0.84% of the total immigrant population. 

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Fun Fact! According to data from the IME (Institute of Mexicans Abroad), the 10 countries with the highest number of Mexicans abroad are: Canada, Spain, Germany, United Kingdom, Bolivia, Argentina, Netherlands, Costa Rica, Chile and Panama.

South American migration to developed countries  

In the history of South American nations, three major migration patterns can be identified: the first pattern corresponds to foreign immigration, the second refers to intra-regional migration and the third pattern is related to the emigration of South Americans to developed countries. 

In recent decades, while immigration from outside the region decreased and the intra-regional pattern consolidated, there was an increase in extra-regional emigration. This phenomenon was driven by social, economic and political factors, such as the ruptures and reestablishment of democratic forms of government, which generated forced migration movements between the 1960s and 1980s. Lack of work, low wages, poor prospects for individual and collective growth, and the poor quality of public goods and services, among others, stimulated the permanent outflow of populations, mainly highly skilled migrants and manual workers in less specialized sectors, to the United States and Europe. In the south of the continent, the displacement of political exiles was a dominant feature in these years, both in Europe and North America. Since the early 1990s, most countries in the region experienced accelerated extraregional migration, fueled by economic and social crises (and in the case of Colombia, intensified by the armed conflict). In recent decades, the extra-regional destinations of South American migration have expanded, mainly to Europe, where Spain is the main destination, followed by Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, France and the United Kingdom, reaching a volume of 4.1 million South Americans in 2020.

Facts you need to know

On December 31, 2020, free movement between the United Kingdom and the European Union ended, and on January 1, 2021, the United Kingdom implemented a points-based immigration system (points-based immigration system) that prioritizes skills and talent, rather than where a person is from.

Why emigrate? 

Many came to London in search of economic opportunities. For some, the United Kingdom has been the second country to which they emigrate after Spain. The global economic crisis and the unemployment rate in Spain have influenced a second migratory movement to London. Latin Americans are increasingly entering the UK, having first migrated to Spain and, to a lesser extent, to other EU countries such as Portugal and Italy. Hundreds feel discriminated against and have suffered labor exploitation. Many have no documentation.

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Issues facing the immigrant

According to a research conducted by BBC News in the year 2021, the most frequent problems are the following: 

Visas:  Of the Latinos who have entered the country on temporary visas, more than half of those living in London have permanent residency. However, there is a percentage of them who are in the country under irregular conditions.

In terms of job offers: Of the Latinos working in London, almost half work in the cleaning and hospitality sectors. Only a few are in the liberal and managerial professions. It is a population, for the most part, well educated. There are many engineers, accountants, teachers and social workers. The most common thing is that when they arrive, they go into cleaning. It is very difficult for them to get the jobs they had in Latin America.

Labor abuses: Among the problems they face are lack of pay for their work, verbal abuse and unjustified dismissal. Latin American workers earn less than the national minimum wage.

Language: The BBC News study states that almost 70% of Latin Americans who took part in the survey feel that discrimination is a daily problem and language is one of the factors. When they arrive in London, very few of them master the English language and due to their work commitments, they often do not have time to study it. 

VISIT TO: Bones yanks in the UK

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