5th. Mexico-U.S. Binational Conference on Social Work and Migration Begins Activities

The 5th Mexico-U.S. Binational Conference on Social Work and Migration “Social Contingencies in Transnational Migration Problems in Health Context by COVID-19 and models of care in Social Work” began with the participation of students, teachers, researchers and activists.

Representing Salvador Hernández Vélez, Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila´s President, the Director of Research and Postgraduate Studies, Cristóbal Noé Aguilar González, welcomed the students, teachers and researchers from schools, faculties, universities and guest organizations. He stressed that it is an honor for UAdeC to host such an important event.

In this regard, he emphasized that our University has researchers and teachers, people committed to social work, thanks to them, it has been possible to strengthen the ties established with other academic institutions and civil society organizatios to address the issue of migration urgently.

So this way, we will be able to establish mechanisms and actions that lead to improving the conditions of people in mobility, as well as ensuring the protection of rights and life itself during the critical moments we are experiencing due to the health crisis, coupled with economic and social crises.

For her part, the director of the National School of Social Work of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico and president of RENIESTS, the Mtra. Carmen Casas Ratia, thanked UAdeC and Faculty of Social Work authorities for making this event possible, promoted by the National Network of Institutions of Higher Education in Social Work and Northamerican institutions.

She noted that the Binational Conference was a space for meeting, reflecting and betting on the most important phenomena that accompanied transnational migration processes particularly in Mexico and the United States of America. She added that our country had become a destination for those who had to flee their own countries because of problems of violence and persecution.

She also said that the pandemic demonstrated the need for more and better strategies, and articulation with pro-migrant organizations, to strengthen public policies that would guarantee the protection of refugees, displaced persons and migrant families in general.

For this reason, the conference is the scenario that will allow the consolidation of binational team networks, share scientific publications, strategies and intervention

models with an impact on the prevention of stigmatizing, racist and violent behaviors against families of migrant communities.

She added that the work done, and the coming efforts will provide strength to build new processes of intercultural mediation with North America, Central America, and with those who see Mexico as their new hope for living; binational practices should therefore be promoted for the benefit of society, the protection of children, migrant women and persons in international mobility.

In this way, we will be able to generate the necessary conditions so that the areas of research and intervention of Social Work, can provide and articulate new axes of intervention in favor of migrant communities.

For his part, Jesús Acevedo Alemán, director of the Faculty of Social Work, emphasized that the 5th Binational Conference is an important and relevant event that allows to continue to strengthen academic and intellectual efforts in one of the most felt problems in the border sector.

The Conference allows for the articulation of strategies that could be based on the binational relationship through public, political, academic spaces and initiatives for the benefit of migrant communities, so that the event has become a standard for underpinning the presence and disciplinary prominence of Social Work.

Dr. Luis Torres-Hostos, Founding Dean of the University of Texas School of Social Work, Rio Grande Valley, recognized the labor and work of UAdeC through the Faculty of Social Work to successfully conduct the 5th Binational Conference.

He said the event brings together both sides of the border to disseminate the work being done on migration and communities in mobility, and that today it is more important than ever because of the global health conditions we are experiencing.

Therefore, he indicated that addressing migration and health issues was now more essential than ever; during the three working sessions of the Binational, spaces will be generated to share ideas and strategies that allow work to be carried out on these topics.

Martha Virginia Jasso Oyervides, professor at the UAdeC School of Social Work and coordinator of the event, stressed that for six years we have been working to join collaborative efforts on the issue related to the migrant population with the realization of the Binational Conference.

On this occasion, it was decided to address the issue related to Social Contingencies in Transnational Migration Problems in Health Context by COVID-19 and the models of care in Social Work, in order to analyze the current scenarios for health contingency.

UAdeCFaculty of Social Work works in collaboration with the National School of Social Work of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico, the National Network of Institutions of Higher Education in Social Work, the Faculty of Social Work and Human Development of Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León.

The USN North American Hispanic Education Foundation; Loyola University Chicago School of Social Work; Commission on Human Rights for the State of Coahuila de Zaragoza; the University Seminar on Internal Displacement, Migration, Exile and Repatriation; University of Texas—Rio Grande Valley.

As well as the University of Houston; Universidad de Sonora; University of Texas San Antonio; Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa and Universidad Autónoma de Tamaulipas.

The Conference takes place from December 3 to 18, 2020; also from February 4 to March 4, 2021, through the TEAMS platform and is transmitted simultaneously through the Facebook page of Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila. For more information visit www.uadec.mx/5ta-conferencia-binacional/.