Asylum Seekers Face Processing Away from The Border
Asylum seekers from south of the American border are now facing a new dilemma as the Trump administration continues its crack down on immigration. According to a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) official, asylum-seeking families may find themselves flown across the United States to have their initial claims processed. This is the newest solution to help ease the burden on already overwhelmed border stations across the Southwest United States.
Immigrant families and children to the United States from countries such as Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, that have come into the country via Southern California, Tucson, Arizona, and El Paso, Texas, have faced the prospect of being bussed hundreds of miles from the border in order to have their claims processed. Aid groups across the United States have been helping them settle in the new location while they wait for their hearing. Now they may be flown even further away from other family members or friends who had been waiting for them.
The push to fly migrant families and children to other locations stems from the influx of people overcrowding the border stations in places like McAllen, Texas. Reports of squalid conditions have prompted the Trump administration to work with the CBP to fly the families to border stations who have the capacity to accept and help them in northern and coastal states. The immigration system is overwhelmed and the safety of these families and children is becoming a priority.
Already the CBP has flown close to 1,000 migrants from overcrowded processing centers in the Rio Grande Valley to Del Rio, Texas, and San Diego, California, to ease the burden on the stations. According to figures released by the CBP, the agency has been averaging close to 4,500 arrests of illegal immigrants per day. Since October 2018, approximately 248,000 migrants have entered the United States requesting asylum, a number that is taxing the border infrastructure.
If the Trump administration begins flying migrants to other parts of the United States, the border station they will reporting to will be expected to process a maximum of 135 people per flight. Counties such as Broward County in South Florida already has overcrowding problems in their homeless shelters and cannot accommodate more. Currently, the plans to fly immigrants to other processing stations is in the preliminary planning stages.
President Trump is currently seeking $4.5 billion in emergency border funds from Congress to help ease the overcrowding in the southern border stations. He is also attempting to change immigration law in order to detain families for a longer period of time, build infrastructure that would help process applications for asylum quicker, and deter future migrants from travelling to the United States, whether they are from south of the border or elsewhere in the world. Congressional Democratic lawmakers are willing to consider humane policies that fund the President’s request but excludes funding for detention beds.
Contact an Austin Immigration Lawyer
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