Texas migrant crisis: Local Houston advocates react to dozens of migrants found dead in San Antonio

At least 51 migrants are now dead after an abandoned trailer truck was found in San Antonio Monday. Houston immigration rights advocates say the tragedy could've been prevented.

The gruesome now marks the deadliest human smuggling operation in recent history.

BACKGROUND: Death toll rises to 51 after migrants found in abandoned tractor-trailer in Texas

According to a representative with Mexico's Foreign Relations Department, 22 of the deceased were from Mexico, seven from Guatemala and two from Honduras. The rest of the deceased are still being identified.

"Another one. Another one of these incidents that happens. Until immigration policy changes, until something gives then unfortunately, we’re going to see a lot more of these events happening," said Cesar Espinosa, Executive Director at FIEL, an immigrant rights advocacy group.

Espinosa believes the solution lies in relaxing some policies.  

"If there are going to be jobs that are offered here that are maybe lower wages, or companies trying to take advantage of cheap labor from immigrants and things like that, it makes sense for there to be some sort of pathway for them to maybe come in, work and maybe go back home."


"Not only would this eliminate some of the tragedies that are happening, but it would also give a boost to the economy. People are able to travel back and forth, tickets and services back and forth, and we would see an impact to our economy. But more importantly, we would see a decrease in folks trying to enter the country illegally," Espinosa said. 

In a tweet, Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia said, "These people died a tragic death while desperately in search of a better life. We must fix our broken immigration system to better allow families a chance to escape their circumstances. These tragedies can be prevented."

FIEL’s now investigating whether any of those migrants were headed to Houston, as more help from the community continues to pour in.