Migrant Crisis at the Texan Border


Recently, thousands of immigrants have gathered at the U.S. border of Del Rio, Texas searching for entry into the United States. Believing they have nothing to go back to in their home countries, many of these people have taken their entire families and what minimal supplies they could bring to hopefully begin a new life. For some, they have embarked on multiple month long journeys for the opportunity to cross the American border. 

   After having crossed the ankle-deep river, immigrants gather in a staging area under the Del Rio Bridge, as they await action from federal authorities. An estimated 14,000 people have gathered in this area; most of them being from Haiti, a country in the Caribbean. 

   The migrants temporarily residing here were given 22 portable toilets to use, but they have no access to running water. The temperature in this area reaches triple digits, and many are concerned with the conditions of the increasing number of people gathering under the bridge. To combat the heat, many families have set up makeshift shelters with blankets to find shade from the violent heat. 

   For food, many traverse the Rio Grande once again to buy food from local stores in Mexico. Those staying there have been forced to sleep on the dirt under surveillance by armed border guards. 

   Despite the overall bleak conditions that the migrants are facing, many have found ways to lighten the atmosphere. During the day, many migrants sell commodities to others and many families have gathered together discussing their shared experience with each other. 

  The most prominent issues that are causing individuals to leave their home country are natural disasters and ongoing political turmoil. The number of migrants from Haiti has been increasing since June and numbers have augmented, due the assassination of the president in July. A devastating earthquake further solidified many Haitians resolve to look for opportunities elsewhere. 

   False information spread regarding humanitarian help from the United States is inspiring many families to leave their homes towards an uncertain future. For instance, a rumor that President Joe Biden was handing out humanitarian visas after the assassination of the Haitian president caused many to pack their bags and bring their families to the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

   Many Haitian immigrants are making the journey from Chile and Braziltwo of Latin America’s richest countriesthat recently faced economic depressions, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Many Haitians originally migrated to these countries to seek asylum are now making month-long travels, mostly on foot and bus, through places such as the Amazon Forest and the Andes, in order to escape the declining economies and long head anti-black sentiment of these countries.

   Early on, Border Patrol claimed it would immediately send back up officers to address the influx of people and promote a safe and orderly process of migration. Plans were also made to fly some of the gathered migrants to other borders in the area that were not confronting such extreme numbers of people as Del Rio. 

   Many of Del Rio’s citizens are concerned regarding the town’s ability to sustain such a large amount of incoming migrants. In addition, the division on American immigrant policy continues as politicians suggest a range of solutions to address the crisis. The governor of Texas, Greg Abbot suggests that state law enforcement arrest migrants for trespassing to discourage illegal immigration. 
  Deportation flights have now begun sending Haitians back to their home country, to which many immigrant activists have opposed. Instead, they believe that the migrants should be offered legal protection and the ability to apply for asylum especially since their home country remains beset by problems.