Immigrants surging over the US border before Trump takeover

An immigration system at full capacity is facing President-Elect, Donald Trump when he takes over the White House in January. There is an increasing number of undocumented immigrants from Central America and Haiti continuing to use the Mexican border to enter the US.

The resources in place to process, detain, and try the immigrants in court are strained – federal officials say that Haitian immigrants who have been coming into the US in large numbers are being released. This reverses the previous promises to send the immigrants to jail before deporting them. The Associated Press was told by the US government that Haitians arriving in California and Arizona are being released because of a dearth of jail space.

The official claims that immigrants are being released with orders to later report to court for immigration hearings are an often-used tactic at times when there is a lack of detention space, to try to keep families together or under humanitarian conditions. The Haitians are given a national security and criminal background check before being released.

On Thursday, federal immigration officials announced that a large processing facility is being opened in Texas to try to cope with the enormous number of families and unaccompanied immigrant minors streaming through the border into the US. The facility, located just outside El Paso, in Tomillo, will be operational by next week and is capable of hosting up to 500 people.