HOUSTON, Texas–Only 38 illegal immigrants–of the tens of thousands who have flooded the border in recent months–were deported to their home countries in Central America on Monday. Most of the migrants who have illegally entered the country since October are expected to be allowed to stay.
Those deported on Monday included 21 children, according to the Wall Street Journal. The group was transported via plane from El Paso, Texas to San Pedro Sula, Honduras. San Pedro Sula is reportedly one of the top cities where the current flood of aliens are migrating from.
U.S. officials attempted to make it clear that this would not be the last load of illegal immigrants to be deported. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a statement that said, “This is just the initial wave. We expect additional adults with children will be returned to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador soon, based on the results of removal proceedings or expedited removal.”
It is easy to imagine that the DHS was attempting to send a clear message to Central America by deporting the small group: if you come, you won’t get to stay. The Obama Administration has additionally attempted to discourage potential illegal crossers by focusing on the deadly elements of the trip to the U.S.; taxpayer funded print, radio ads, and billboards are being distributed throughout Central American countries conveying the dangers of the journey north.
Those efforts, however, may be diminished by what currently occurs after an individual from Central America enters the U.S. illegally. Rather than being turned away, illegal immigrants are first taken to a federal housing facility where they are given a myriad of taxpayer subsidized benefits including housing, food, education, vocational training, recreation, and even legal counsel.
Subsequently, the majority of migrants are released onto U.S. soil after promising to appear in court at a later date for an immigration hearing. But as much as 95 percent never show up in court and end up getting lost in the woodwork or forgotten about by U.S. officials.
It is easy to imagine that the benefits administered while in custody, coupled with the migrants’ subsequent release, only spurs rumors about amnesty and encourages more Central Americans to make the journey north.
U.S. House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul recently said, “While these kids and families are given ‘notices to appear,’ the reality is that it will take years to work through the immigration system. To break this cycle we need to add in some real deterrence – first, mandatory detention and then we should explore ways to promptly return those who come here illegally.”
He continued, “The Administration must first recognize its failed immigration and border policies are the source of the problem.”
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