WASHINGTON, Feb. 4, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- American communities continue to be inundated by a continuing large influx of illegal immigrants from Central America - about 240,000 new illegal arrivals since 2012. Over the last year, the number of illegal minor arrivals has increased 117 percent, and the number of new illegally family arrivals has increased 187 percent. Today the U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security examines the Obama administration's "new normal."
Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, stresses that the surge of migrants should not be characterized as a "refugee flow," as their primary reason for coming to the U.S. is not because they were displaced by conflict or persecution, but because they have heard that Obama administration policies allow them to stay in the United States.
Vaughan says that the administration's "see no evil" approach to the border crisis meant that government agencies adopted shockingly negligent policies for relocating the unaccompanied juvenile migrants. The vast majority of minors are placed "without verifying the identity of sponsors, criminal histories, or incomes." As a result, federal authorities lost track of most of the minors and some were placed in human trafficking, debt labor, and other abusive situations.
View the testimony and watch live at: http://www.cis.org/Testimony/vaughan-another-surge-southwest-border
American communities also pay a high price from absorbing the large number of illegal immigrants. Local governments are forced to find funding to incorporate large numbers of new students, who often have few years of education and do not speak English. In addition health care services are high due to vaccination needs and many of the minors being injured or abused during their trip to the U.S.
But the cost is not merely fiscal; gang numbers and crime are climbing in many locations throughout the country causing a real public safety menace. Vaughan notes: "Violent transnational gangs such as MS-13 have taken full advantage of the Obama administration's welcome mat to swell their ranks here, contributing to a noticeable spike in gang violence in certain localities – with tragic results." She recounts a number of recent instances of gang violence and mayhem attributed to teens who arrived as unaccompanied minors and slipped through the lax screening process.
Vaughan concludes that Congress must force a change to alleviate the strain on communities. "Only those juveniles who are victims of exploitative human trafficking and who are without family members in the U.S. should receive special due process protections." Those without a legitimate claim for relief should be prioritized for deportation. Vaughan concluded, "Congress should not allow the Obama administration to incentivize illegal immigration and human smuggling by rewarding those who participate – especially when this act involves children."
Contact: Marguerite Telford
SOURCE Center for Immigration Studies