Wednesday, June 29, 2022

More illegal immigrants, border agents testing positive for COVID-19: DHS official

A Department of Homeland Security official said this week that the rate at which illegal immigrants are testing positive for COVID-19 has “increased significantly” in recent weeks.

There has also been an increase in the number of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers who have tested positive, despite more and more of them being vaccinated against the virus that causes COVID-19. Is.

“The rates faced by non-citizens testing positive for COVID-19 have risen significantly in recent weeks. And although the rate of infection among CBP officers was declining, the rate recently began to rise again, even though the percentage of fully vaccinated officers and agents has increased significantly since January. This has led to an increase in the number of CBP personnel being hospitalized,” said David Shahoulian, assistant secretary of border and immigration policy. a court filing.

Shahoulian included the information because he warned a federal judge of “adverse consequences” if the judge decides to block enforcement of Title 42, an order the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has on border agents. Enables you to quickly take out illegal aliens who cross. United States due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Federal officials are releasing COVID-19 positive immigrants in Texas and other border states, fueling concerns that illegal immigrants are spreading the CCP (Communist Party of China) virus, which causes COVID-19.

The city of McAllen said on Wednesday that more than 7,000 COVID-19 positive aliens have been released into the city by CBP since February, including 1,500 in the past week. This prompted him to set up an emergency shelter.

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DHS Secretary Alejandro Meyercas told senators during a recent congressional hearing that federal officials do not always notify local jurisdictions before releasing illegal immigrants.

The number of illegal border crossings continues to grow during the Biden administration, coming in at more than 200,000 in July. According to a recent filing, that surge has affected Department of Homeland Security (DHS) operations and filled DHS facilities beyond their capacity.

As of August 1, the Border Patrol was at 389 per cent of its COVID-19 adjusted capacity at the south-west border.

There were 17,778 illegal immigrants in Border Patrol facilities on that date, including 2,223 immigrant children without parents, who were said to be minors alone.

The adjusted capacity is 4,706.

Facilities were lost in seven of the nine sectors on the southwest border, including the holding of 10,000 illegal immigrants in the Rio Grande Valley sector, the epicenter of the current boom.

This was 783 per cent above the COVID-19 adjusted capacity and 287 per cent above its normal capacity.

“These capacity figures are extremely worrying, especially because of the continued spread of the highly permeable delta variant,” Shahoulian said.

US officials recently said the variant is more permeable and preliminary research indicates it is better able to break down vaccine protection than other variants.

Migrants living in Donna, TX as border facilities struggle to handle surge
Young children lie inside a pod at a Department of Homeland Security holding facility operated by Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) on March 30, 2021 in Donna, Texas. (Dario Lopez-Mills/Pool/Getty Images)

If Title 42 is blocked, DHS officials will not be able to safely capture and process all illegal immigrants who are entering the United States, according to Shahulian.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the original Title 42 order in October 2020. A new version of the order issued in August came after officials assessed “specific risks of COVID-19 transmission” at DHS facilities, including a “significant increase”. CBP encounters have caused DHS facilities to exceed COVID-constrained capacity and routinely even exceed non-COVID capacity” and the emergence of the delta version, government officials said this week. Said in another filing in the matter.

The August order was extended this week indefinitely.

Shahulian and other officials are trying to persuade U.S. District Judge Emmett Sullivan not to temporarily or permanently block the use of Title 42.

Three families expelled under the order sued the government last year, arguing they were illegally barred from asserting humanitarian protection claims such as asylum.

The parties said in two joint filings this week that they had been in talks for nearly six months but talks broke down.

Sullivan proposed arbitration, but it would not be beneficial, the parties said in a joint filing on Wednesday. Instead, he said the matter should proceed.

A response to the government’s filing by plaintiffs being represented by groups including the American Civil Liberties Union was expected by the end of the week.

Zachary Stebero

Zachary Steber covers US news including politics and court cases. He started out as a New York City subway reporter at The Epoch Times.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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