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Baylor Anthropologist Chimes in on Humanitarian Crisis and Rising Death Toll on the U.S.-Mexico Border

Released: 16-Jun-2014 3:00 PM EDT
Source Newsroom: Baylor University
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Dr. Lori Baker spent two weeks in June exhuming bodies in Brooks County, Texas in an effort to identify the unknown children and adults that have died while crossing the United States-Mexico border. More than a decade ago, Dr. Baker began the Reuniting Families Program in an effort to identify and repatriate the remains of immigrants that died while crossing the border.

She can speak on the humanitarian crisis on the border, the sheer number of deaths and her experience conducting exhumations. She is available for phone or satellite interviews or in-person. Visit www.reunitingfamilies.org for more information about her work and images.

Dr. Baker is an associate professor of anthropology and has performed forensic DNA analysis of over 350 skeletal cases from 2003- 2012 of missing persons for the U.S., Mexico, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Peru and Honduras resulting in the identification of over 70 individuals. She has acted as a consultant to the Attorney General of Mexican State of Chihuahua as well as to the Washington Office On Latin America, the U.S. Agency for International Development as well as to Truth Commissions in Peru and Panama. She is a member of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and has published in national and international journals. Her work has been featured in Discovery Magazine, National Geographic, NPR, The Washington Post, USA Today, MSNBC, The Wall Street Journal, ABC News and other media outlets.

Dr. Baker is an associate professor of anthropology at Baylor University who specializes in molecular and forensic analysis of skeletal remains. She also works internationally on the recovery and identification of remains of victims of human rights violations and assisted in the establishment of Mexico’s missing person database. She has been an invited speaker in many national and international venues such as at the Peace Palace in The Hague as part of the International Commission on Missing Persons Conference and Amnesty International.

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