The deportation from the United States of Central American migrants affects the mental health of not only those who are repatriated, but also that of their families and communities. All deportees suffer the effects. Those persons that are returned to their place of origin after having lived a long time in the United States leave behind family and friends, and must readjust to a society with which they have lost contact. And those who were arrested shortly after crossing the border may experience a sense of failure at not having fulfilled their goal of emigrating. In both cases, when they return to their home countries, the deportees suffer discrimination and rejection.
Following the implementation of more stringent immigration policies, there has been an increase in the violation of the rights of migrants—many of whom are minors—who lack the necessary migratory documentation in Mexico and Central America, whether that be in their country of origin, while in transit, at their destination or on their return. As such, consular protection should be positioned, institutionalized and consolidated as a state policy, being a responsibility shared by all countries within the region. Fortunately, in the last decade, Central American governments, following Mexico’s example, have begun to place consular protection as a priority public policy; however, they continue to favor diplomatic work over consular responsibilities.