The Foreign Ministry commemorated International Migrants Day in recognition of the important contributions made by Mexican migrants and migrants of other nationals to the communities where they live around the world.

Since 2000, International Migrants Day has been commemorated every year on December 18 to make the world’s population aware of migrants’ human rights, and of their issues and challenges in every region of the world.

This year, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) invited the international community to remember the refugees and migrants who have lost their lives during their travels in search of better opportunities for themselves and their families.

As a country of departure, destination, transit and return of migrants, Mexico has become known around the world for the steps it has taken to facilitate the processes related to migration, for integrating immigrants into their communities of destination, for helping them keep their ties to their places of origin and ensuring full respect for their human rights.

Since Claudia Ruiz Massieu took over as Foreign Secretary, the Foreign Ministry has taken the following steps in this area

·      The Mexican consulate in San Jose, California was certified as the first diplomatic office to meet customer service standards enabling it to serve Mexicans abroad more efficiently.

·      A Letter of Intent was signed between the Foreign Ministry and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) on November 25 to provide consular attention to the victims of gender-based violence.

·      A convention was signed between the Foreign Ministry and the National Electoral Institute on December 17 to issue voter registration cards to Mexicans living abroad.

·      IME (Institute for Mexicans Abroad) scholarships for thousands of Mexicans living in the United States for elementary, middle and high school education.

·      Gender workshops in Montreal, Austin, Chicago and Los Angeles.

·      The "This is my Mexico" Children's Painting Contest for Mexican children and children with Mexican backgrounds around the world.

These and other programs help improve the living conditions and opportunities of migrants and ensure better service from the consulates for our citizens. It is estimated that there are more than 11.9 million Mexicans living abroad, of which 97% live in the United States.