The immigration question will be a key issue during this year’s presidential election.
But perhaps the real question is — what can the country realistically handle in terms of migration flow?
According to The Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General, America isn’t dealing well with the recent year’s influx.
A new report from the DHS watchdog found that 850,000 migrants were halted at the U.S.-Mexico border in 2019.
This led to a series of major problems for almost all 14 Border Patrol stations along the border.
From The Hill:
Record numbers led to a serious overcrowding problem at Border Patrol facilities, which only led to more serious health issues, the report explained.
‘Although Border Patrol established temporary holding facilities to alleviate overcrowding, it struggled to limit detention to the 72 hours generally permitted, as options for transferring detainees out of CBP custody to long-term facilities were limited,’ the DHS IG’s office said, USA Today first reported.
Given the global pandemic, health is now a bigger concern than ever.
And the report added that given the unavoidable crowding at Border Patrol stations, it has become increasingly difficult to “manage contagious diseases.”
Furthermore, the entire process takes much longer with so many people detained.
Federal law says CBP can only hold migrants for 72 hours before transferring them to ICE or the Department of Health and Human Services.
But Border Patrol is so heavily overloaded, nearly 40 percent of migrants had been held “longer than 72 hours.”
Then there’s the simple problem of space. The Border Patrol’s short-term detention infrastructure just hasn’t been able to adapt to the numbers.
This causes insufficient space for quarantining (if necessary) and ventilation systems.
In the end, the report makes it clear that CBP can’t keep up. However, this report is based on 2019 numbers and given the epidemic, 2020’s numbers should be lower.
Even so, the efficiency of our Border Patrol processes will likely remain a major topic of discussion for years to come.
- A new watchdog report says Border Patrol has been overwhelmed by the 2019 migrant flow.
- CBP has struggled to control the crowding, which poses a serious health concern.
- Extra long detainment processes lead to migrants being detained far longer than federal law allows.
Source: The Hill