The Ombudsman’s Office held the fourth edition of “La vuelta es DR” (The Return is DR), a conversation which has as its main objective to raise awareness among the Dominican population about illegal migration and its consequences.
The recent version of the event, headed by the Ombudsman, Pablo Ulloa, was held in the Sergio Castillo Auditorium of the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo (UASD), Higüey campus, and was attended by personalities from this province.
Ulloa pointed out the dangers to which are exposed people who decide to take a course “in search of a better life” without carrying out the corresponding legal procedures, due to the lack of correct knowledge of migration, turning their dream of progress into a nightmare that, sometimes, they do not have the opportunity to tell.
He made a call to avoid falling into the trap of illegal travel, whether by sea, crossing borders or with false documents, reiterating that these trips can be the road to death.
“This is a cry for us to be responsible and do everything in a regular and legal manner. The Ombudsman promotes the Dominicans, loves his country, loves patriotic values, defends the Constitution”, explained Ulloa, while narrating his migratory experience.
In this sense, Ulloa highlighted that “La vuelta es DR” is a space in which different actors of the national life participate, to create initiatives that give answers to the needs of the youth, based on the local reality.
“It is the clamor of an institution such as the Ombudsman so that we all understand that the youth of the Dominican Republic need an education based on the reality of the labor market and real opportunities based on their training,” he explained during his presentation.
Likewise, he specified that government institutions and the private sector must look for alternatives to change the reality, and that those Dominicans who are thinking of leaving the country in an irregular manner can change that thinking.
He asked the young people present to focus on their studies in order to be able to take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves in a legal manner. He stressed that in the country they can find options to improve their lifestyles without the need to have an intermediary who offers them an uncertain future based on illegality.
On his side, the Consul General of the United States in the Dominican Republic, Greg Segas, during his presentation valued the importance of the event organized by the Ombudsman, by explaining the dangers to which people who seek to reach U.S. territory illegally are exposed.
“It is important to fight against this idea that the way back is Mexico, it is extremely dangerous; I remind people who risk this journey that coyotes belong to criminal gangs and that the objective is to take the money from those who make this trip regardless of whether they reach the final destination or not,” said the U.S. official.
Segas detailed the different ways in which a person can enter his or her country through the different study, work or travel programs.
“La Vuelta es DR” featured the testimonies of people who have been able to undertake projects in the United States after going through the legal migration procedure, such as Asbel Gómez, creator and manager of the footwear brand Raeli Brand, and congressman Hamlet Melo, both of whom narrated their life experiences of migrating regularly, who pointed out that coming to the United States illegally is not worth it.
In addition, the panel “Opportunities in the business and government sector” was held, with the participation of government and business representatives, including Paul Beswick, member of the National Council of Private Enterprise (CONEP) and director of the Punta Cana Group Foundation; Vivían Jacobo, director of the National Employment Service (SENAE) of the Ministry of Labor and Williams Ramírez, business manager of SENAE.
Also present at the activity were the mayor of Higüey, Rafael Barón Duluc (Cholitin); the director of the municipal district of Verón-Punta Cana, Ramón Antonio Ramírez (Manolito), among other personalities of the province of La Altagracia.
The Ombudsman has taken “La Vuelta es DR” to the Mauricio Baez Club in the National District, Santiago, Baní and Higüey.