Border news from Yuma

If you don’t know, the Yuma sector of Border Patrol is located on Arizona’s southern border with Mexico. It has had some noticeable stories recently including the apprehension of 11 illegal immigrants from Iran in February and Senator Ron Johnson’s recent exposure of the growing number of migrants seeking asylum.

The latest news from Yuma is that their Mayor, Douglas Nicholls, is asking the federal government for help to deal with the still increasing, no end in sight, migrant numbers seeking asylum.

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) – Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls asks for federal help as it continues to see a migrant surge in Yuma County.

12 News reported President Joe Biden’s promise to improve the immigration policy has started a surge in migrants in Arizona.

Last Friday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) told News 11’s Crystal Jimenez it continues to see an increase in apprehensions recently. Many of which are said to include children and pregnant women. Agents say once undocumented immigrants are apprehended, they must release them in the next 72 hours. 

However, Nicholls tells 12 News this decision is now putting Yuma County in a difficult spot. Nicholls said, “We’ve had over 1,000 people come through the border patrol and be released into Yuma over this last month. It’s a big concern. We don’t want to continue in the way we are because it’s unsustainable.”

Nicholls adds that it’s been difficult since Yuma doesn’t have a shelter in place for migrants nor has the power to build one. For this reason, non-profits have been helping migrants bussed to Tucson.

KYMA, “Mayor Nicholls says federal officials to visit Yuma as migrant surge continues”, 3/16/21

But the ever increasing numbers surging at the border isn’t the only concern. It was verified today that the Brazilian strain of coronavirus had been detected in a family which crossed over into Arizona the first week of March:

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) – The Regional Center for Border Health (RCBH) confirmed Wednesday the Brazilian strain of coronavirus in Arizona originated from a family of asylum seekers who were released from CBP custody in Yuma.

RCBH also tells News 11’s Crystal Jimenez, the three people who tested positive for the variant were asylum-seekers.

RCBH said all three people tested positive during the first week of March and are from the same family.

RCBH President and CEO Amanda Aguirre said her team is conducting contact tracing. They want to follow the path the family took from Border Patrol custody, to their trip to the testing facility.

KYMA, “Officials link Brazilian variant to asylum-seeking family in Yuma”, 3/17/21

While the article says the family tested positive in the first week of March, there is no information about their needing treatment, receiving treatment, or if they were just allowed to move on through the state and potentially somewhere else into the country. There are no details on what happens when migrants test positive for coronavirus.

Overwhelming numbers, the threat of possible terrorists coming across the border (which just happened), and the concern about introducing more coronavirus cases into the general populace are reasons the board of directors of the National Sheriff’s Association has drafted a security resolution to be voted on and then sent to the Biden administration telling them to do their damn job and secure the border.

But given Biden’s repeal of all immigration policy associated with Trump, his halting the wall construction, and his promise of no deportations in the first 100 days in office leaves little hope that anything will be done at all other than to provide border officers with welcome badges and tell them to usher the masses through. Almost like CBP and ICE have been abolished. Almost.