US sees jump in illegal border crossings

Lazy eyes listen


The United States has seen a significant increase in illegal border crossings, with the number of migrants apprehended by officials climbing by about 25% in the last month. The US government is planning new policies to deal with a massive surge of immigrants.

According to recently revised federal figures, more than 168,000 migrants were apprehended after crossing the border in March, a considerable rise from the 135,000 reported in February. More than 257,000 migrant interactions of any type were registered in the same month, outnumbering the 213,000 recorded in February and the 250,000 recorded in March 2022.

Though migration normally increases during the warmer spring months, border crossings have been on the rise in recent years, with Border Patrol apprehensions increasing from 885,000 in 2021 to more than 1.6 million in 2022. With over 1 million reports as of March, this year is on course to outperform past years.

Border controls were strengthened following the Covid-19 outbreak, but have gradually been lifted as the epidemic has subsided. Title 42, a provision used to deport millions of unauthorised migrants during the health crisis, is slated to expire next month, raising fears of an even larger spike in migration at the southern border.

According to internal Department of Homeland Security predictions quoted by CBS, officials are preparing for 400,000 migrants per month – or approximately 13,000 per day – to cross the border after Title 42 sunsets on May 11, significantly beyond the already high numbers seen this year.

To prepare for the projected surge, the White House is said to be working on finalising a regulation that would empower border authorities to turn away asylum seekers who pass through other countries before arriving in the US, forcing them to seek shelter elsewhere.

Despite President Joe Biden’s criticism of his predecessor, Donald Trump’s, border policy, his government expanded the Title 42 programme in January to cover Nicaraguans, Haitians, and Cubans who crossed the border unlawfully. It formerly exclusively extended to Mexican, Venezuelan, and Central American migrants.

Despite increasing the number of expulsions, Biden has also sought to provide new pathways for legal migration, promising to take 30,000 people each month from Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, and Haiti under specified conditions over a two-year period.