The Crisis at the Border


Mariah Holston, Staff Writer

Over 10,000 Haitian migrants have been eagerly and nervously waiting under the Del Rio bridge, in Texas, seeking refuge to get to the United States of America. According to Del Rio Mayor Bruno Lozano, “About 10,000 migrants — including families, pregnant women and babies — were waiting to be processed by US immigration authorities.” The Haitian refugees are staying in man made shelters and/or flimsy tents while living in extreme heat conditions. The migration of thousands of Haitians has created a crisis at the Texas border. 

In 2020, the Trump administration worked with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, also known as the CDC, to come up with the Title 42 of United States law. Title 42 orders the authorities in charge of immigration to expel migrants in a non customary way, including not allowing them to seek asylum or protection in the United States. The Washington Post states, “Biden has continued to use one of Trump’s most contentious enforcement tools to expel migrants as quickly as possible. It’s a health code, known as Title 42, that cites the pandemic as a reason to clear out the border as rapidly as possible. These migrants are being sent home without the opportunity to request asylum proceedings.” 

Not only did Haiti recently suffer from an enormous earthquake and a catastrophic tropical storm, they are also in the middle of a major political crisis. The president of Haiti, Jovenel Moïse, was assassinated, allegedly, by twenty eight foreign mercenaries on July 7, 2021. Jessica Bolter, with the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute explains, “When you look at what’s driving this migration, it is a combination of deteriorating economic, social and sometimes security situations in the countries these Haitians have been living in, as well as the perception that under the Biden administration, it might be easier to get into the U.S.” Over the summer, the Biden administration allowed temporary protected status to thousands of Haitians who were already in the United States, illegally. The administration permitted the temporary protection due to “extraordinary and temporary conditions”. The Defense Department plans to move refuges from the Del Rio to other domestic Customs and Border Protection processing facilities. Texas Governor, Greg Abbott,  requested an “emergency declaration”. According to Abbott, the overwhelming number of immigrants is “quickly overrunning” the healthcare and humanitarian resources. Abbott also expressed his concerns about the possible life-threatening risks the residents of Val Verde County face. 

No matter the circumstances, or what Governor Abbott may think, The United States of America has had a process in place, since 1967, called The Refugee Act. This act has absolute obligations to give and provide refugees the protection they deserve and qualify for. This Act establishes two different paths to obtain ‘refugee status.’ A refugee is, in legal terms, a person who is unwilling or unable to return to their homeland due to their fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, social group, political affiliation and more. Vice President, Kamala Harris, reveals strategy to address illegal immigration at the border in hopes of solving this crisis.