Reynaldo Leaños Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Reynaldo Leaños Jr.

Border and Immigration Reporter

Reynaldo Leanos Jr. covers immigration and the U.S.-Mexico border for Texas Public Radio.

Prior to joining Texas Public Radio, Reynaldo was a freelance journalist in the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas and in New York City. His work has appeared in Public Radio International’s The World and Global Nation, NBC News, NPR’s Latino USA, KUT’s Texas Standard and KUT.

He has an undergraduate degree from Texas State University, where he studied journalism and international studies. Leanos also has a master’s degree from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY, where he specialized in international reporting.

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In Matamoros, Mexico, more than 1,500 asylum-seekers are living in squalid conditions in a tent encampment and Mexican officials want them to move.

Officials recently took a page from the Trump administration and threatened to separate asylum-seekers from their children.

A Mexican child welfare official, holding a clipboard, addressed a crowd of asylum-seekers last week in a sprawling tent encampment near the Gateway International Bridge that connects Matamoros to Brownsville, Texas.

Reynaldo Leaños Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Officials in Matamoros, Mexico, are threatening to separate asylum seekers from their children.

Verónica G. Cárdenas for Texas Public Radio

The installation of steel rebar at a site south of Donna in the Rio Grande Valley marks the first border wall construction in Texas since President Trump took office.

A young boy eats his meal that was delivered by Team Brownsville as he overlooks the encampment where many asylum seekers sleep.
Reynaldo Leaños Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Update: This story has been updated to reflect the location of the shelter. It is at a gymnasium at Alberca Chavez.

 

There are more than 1,500 migrants living in squalid conditions on the streets in Matamoros, Mexico. They’re forced to wait there for their day in U.S. immigration court under the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico policy.

 

  

 

The encampment area where hundreds of asylum seekers are staying near the Gateway International Bridge that connects Brownsville, Texas and Matamoros, Mexico.
Reynaldo Leaños Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Amnesty International directors from around the world visited Matamoros, Mexico this weekend.


Reynaldo Leanos Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Thousands of asylum seekers in Matamoros, Mexico, across the Rio Grande from Brownsville, don’t have access to clean water. They have to use the Rio Grande for bathing, washing clothes and cooling off from the blistering heat. Migrants have developed skin infections, and some have drowned. But a group of volunteers is trying to make their lives better.


Reynaldo Leanos Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Julián Castro, a Democratic presidential candidate, visited asylum seekers in Matamoros, Mexico, on Monday.


Updated at 12:50 p.m. ET

Democratic presidential candidate Julián Castro knew he had to do something when he heard what was happening to LGBTQ and disabled asylum-seekers at the border.

Dani Marrero Hi (left) with the Texas Civil Rights Project and attornery Jodi Goodwin (right) talk to Mayela, who is seeking asylum into the U.S.
Reynaldo Leaños Jr. | Texas Public Radio

The Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” program forces asylum seekers who reach the southern border to wait in Mexico until their court date in the U.S. This has become an especially dangerous limbo for LGBTQ+ asylum seekers, who have reported violence and harassment against them.


To stem the flow of migrants across the southern border, the Trump administration is sending tens of thousands of asylum-seekers back to Mexico to await their day in U.S. immigration court — including some pregnant women.

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