As President Joe Biden seeks to refute the thesis that the doors of the United States are open, the country faces the largest increase in migrants in 20 years at its border with Mexico, the secretary said on Tuesday. State (16). Internal security, Alejandro Mayorkas.
According to figures released by his department, border crossings attempts by people from the neighboring country and the Northern Triangle – Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador – have steadily increased since April 2020.
The coronavirus pandemic, hurricanes and other natural disasters which have caused great damage in the countries of origin of immigrants explain, according to the secretary, the deterioration of the living conditions of those who risk crossing the border illegally.
In February alone, 100,441 people were arrested or deported at the border with Mexico, according to data from the Customs and Border Protection (CBP). This number represents the highest monthly total since the U.S. border crisis in 2019.
While single adults make up the majority of those deported, unaccompanied six-year-olds are not rejected, according to Mayorkas. Despite this, around 9,400 minors were among those detained and deported last month, according to CBP data. If we consider the figures from October to February, the total is almost 30,000 children and adolescents.
Mayorkas said a joint treatment center was being set up to quickly transfer minors into the custody of the Department of Health and Human Services, which he pointed out as a sign that the Joe Biden government is on the move. to deal with the increasing flow of children trying to do so. enter the United States.
“We will have, I believe, next month, enough beds to take care of these children who have nowhere to go but need to be taken care of,” Biden told ABC News in an interview that aired Wednesday ( 17).
The president has partially shirked his responsibilities by citing “sudden increases” in the number of immigrants trying to enter the country over the past two years, but acknowledged that the current crisis could be worse than those facing Donald Trump is confronted.
Biden said he “inherited a mess” from the previous government and sought to refute the thesis that he opened the borders to everyone because he was “a nice guy.”
“I can say clearly [aos imigrantes]: do not come. Do not leave your cities or your communities “, declared the president. Despite the incisive speech, the Democrat defended the importance of attacking the causes which can explain the increase in migratory flows.
“It’s not like someone is sitting in Guadalajara, Mexico and saying, ‘I had a great idea! Sell all we got, give it to a coyote [agente que conduz imigrantes em travessias clandestinas], give him our children and tell him to take them across the border ”.
“Leave them in a desert where they don’t speak the language. Won’t that be fun?” The president continued, wryly, faking a hypothetical scenario.
“That’s not what people come for. They come because their situation is very bad. Some come because they want a better opportunity, for economic reasons. In the meantime, what we have to do is is to make sure we provide beds for these children. “
Earlier this week, the department headed by Mayorkas called on emergency forces to deal with the excess of minors at the border. Agents from Fema, the agency normally responsible for responding to floods and hurricanes, “will help receive, shelter and transport the children” over the next 90 days.
On another front, the U.S. government on Monday (15) began contacting parents of Central American children in the early stages of resuming the program that allows minors fleeing violent situations in Honduras, El, to stay in the States. -United. States, Salvador and Guatemala.
The Central American Minors Program (CAM) allows migrants under the age of 21 whose parents are legally living in the United States to apply for a refugee resettlement interview in their country in order to avoid the dangerous illegal path that leads many of them to detention. in the United States.
On the political level, the new immigration crisis in the United States has highlighted the contrasts between Democrats and Republicans. As Biden’s colleagues prepare to approve measures in the House that begin to put into practice the pledge to grant 11 million immigrants U.S. citizenship, Trump supporters accuse the current government of “chilling out” on that question.
“So that we legalize everything [migrante]Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina asked. “I don’t understand the political logic of this. Everything is out of control. “
The Democratic MPs’ plan is to approve two projects this week deemed less controversial and, therefore, in theory, more likely to pass the House’s scrutiny. One of them provides for measures in favor of people brought to the country in their childhood, called “dreamers”, and the other is to help migrants who have been granted temporary protection status for humanitarian reasons and workers. agricultural.
The performance of these proposals among MPs can serve as a thermometer for the more comprehensive changes promised by Biden. Throughout his campaign for the White House race, the then-candidate guaranteed he would take a more humane approach to immigration policies than the previous government.
Almost two months after his inauguration, however, the current crisis is creating some haze over some of the advances already in place, such as the signing of a series of decrees in the early days of the government which, among other measures, aim to reunify immigrant families separated under the Trump administration and the suspension of the expansion of the wall on the border with Mexico has been suspended.
During that time, the current administration has relied on a controversial measure imposed by Trump in March of last year on the grounds that it has yet to have time to implement more far-reaching changes.
Known as “Title 42” and treated as a public health order, the former Republican President’s ruling cites “serious concern over the introduction of Covid into the United States” as legal support for the deportation immediate response from people trying to enter the country. in violation of travel restrictions or in a clandestine manner.
The Biden government says it has not applied the rule to unaccompanied children. However, the number of people classified under Title 42 remains primarily responsible for the deportation and detention records of those who attempted to cross the border. Of the 100,000 forced to return to their countries of origin in February, more than 70% were targets of the controversial public health order.