In order to fully understand the complexity of migration experience, we will examine push/pull factors and perform a historical-structuralist analysis of both migration systems and transnationalism (Castles & Miller, 2003). We will also mirror Orozco and Yansura’s (2013) focus on a) labour migration (through the lens of policy); b) family remittances; c) diaspora outreach, transnational engagement, and host country integration (in Canada); and d) legal, social, economic and labour challenges of reintegration for individuals who choose to return home.
Of particular interest is whether or not children and youth from Central America and the Caribbean have less protection after the migration process, especially when they are not accompanied by one or both parents. We will also examine whether Canada provides special protections for unaccompanied children, how family dynamics change, whether or not educational difficulties emerge, and the vulnerability of children and youth to trafficking and involvement in organized crime after migration (CARICOM, OIM and UNICEF, 2010; Orozco & Yansura, 2013; UNICEF, 2006).
We will do a macro analysis of census data, together with participatory action research with other governmental and nongovernmental organizations within the region and Canada. Consultation with youth (e.g., focus groups, community activities) who have been affected by the migration process is critical if policies and interventions that both protect and empower them are to be produced (Ensor, 2010).