Migrant encounters at the Southern border shatter previous record

Jennie Taer, DCNF

Migrant encounters have surpassed 2,000,000 so far in fiscal year 2022 at the southern border, according to data released Monday, the first time since records have been available.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) encountered 203,597 migrants in August, putting the fiscal year’s number at 2,150,639, according to agency statistics released Monday. The number is another high for the Biden administration, which continues to see record migrant encounters.

The Biden administration has rolled back a number of Trump-era policies used to target illegal migration; most recently, the Biden administration ended “Remain in Mexico,” which forced certain illegal migrants to await asylum proceedings in Mexico. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) also announced Sept. 8 it will lift certain restrictions for illegal migrants wanting to access public benefits.

There were 55,333 migrants from Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua, according to CBP, which attributed the increase to the communist regimes running their home countries and forcing emigration. Single adults made up 69% of those encountered in August, according to CBP.

“Failing communist regimes in Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba are driving a new wave of migration across the Western Hemisphere, including the recent increase in encounters at the southwest U.S. border,” CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus said in a statement. “Our dedicated teams of skilled agents continue to work around the clock to secure our border and safely and humanely process and vet every individual encountered, but those fleeing repressive regimes pose significant challenges for processing and removal.”

Meanwhile, the Biden administration asserts that the U.S.-Mexico border is “secure,” despite the record encounters.

“At the same time, the number of migrants entering from Mexico and northern Central America has decreased for the third consecutive month, as the Biden-Harris Administration works with our partners in the region to address the root causes of migration, facilitate repatriation, and take thousands of smugglers off the streets. More individuals encountered at the border without a legal basis to remain will be expelled or removed this year than any prior year,” Magnus said.

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