A record number of migrants from Africa are entering the U.S. by way of Mexico, according to an Associated Press report. Their journey is long and dangerous. According to the report, migrants from Africa fly to South America before making their way up to Mexico, and eventually, the U.S. U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials and facilities will continue to be stretched for resources and there is a concern for wellbeing.
“The introduction of this new population places additional burdens on processing stations, to include language and cultural differences,” said Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Raul L. Ortiz earlier this month. “Our agents continue to meet each new challenge as the ongoing humanitarian crisis evolves.”
On June 5, CBP stationed at the Del Rio border sector arrested 34 African nationals. According to CBP data, more than 500 people have been arrested from Africa at the Del Rio sector since May 30. These groups are mostly comprised of family units from the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Angola, according to CBP.
States like Texas and, even, Maine are working to mitigate this record breaking flow. For example, the city of Portland, Maine is absorbing some of these migrants and erecting emergency shelters. The city also held an Expo to address public safety and health concerns. Portland offered a message to concerned citizens that “any rumors or reports of asylum seekers carrying the Ebola virus or being at risk are patently false.” Since June 9, the city has accepted 100 asylum seekers and is now asking citizens to donate and volunteer to help with the influx.