By SDCN Editor
San Diego, CA–The San Diego County Board of Supervisors declared Tuesday the border situation a “humanitarian crisis.”
The declaration comes in response to the influx of over 7,800 migrants dropped at transit stations in San Diego County since September 13.
“The Federal government’s lack of sufficient resources to manage this influx of asylum-seeking migrants has resulted in a critical strain on local resources and created an urgent humanitarian challenge.
The situation has escalated rapidly as daily street releases continue, with no set end date in sight. These releases occur with little direction and minimal resources, leaving local communities grappling with an increasingly untenable situation. The burden of caring for these asylum seekers has been unfairly shifted to local governments, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), and community members.
San Diego County Supervisor Jim Desmond stated, “Our community is facing an unprecedented humanitarian challenge. The Federal Government’s failure to provide adequate resources has placed the burden squarely on our region. We cannot stand by as individuals are released into our communities without direction or the necessary resources. We call upon our Federal delegation to either limit the number of asylum seekers released into the region or provide the necessary resources for our Non-Governmental Partners to manage them adequately. Today’s declaration sends a strong message that we demand action.”
The board’s decision takes several key positions:
- Declares the lack of federal resources for asylum seekers a humanitarian crisis.
- Calls for the Federal Government to designate resources and personnel to manage asylum seekers and connect them to their sponsors and final destinations to prevent street releases.
- Opposes lateral transfers of asylum seekers from other states and jurisdictions.
- Directs the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs to send a detailed letter outlining the specific needs of local non-governmental organizations and impacted communities to San Diego’s Federal delegation to request additional resources.
- Advocates for federal funding to develop a long-term solution for the region, including a permanent facility and operational support when federal agencies release asylum seekers in San Diego County.
A previous Board Action on February 7 directs the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs to continue convening with local cities, state and federal governments, and non-governmental organizations to collaborate and develop a comprehensive, innovative region-wide approach to address both short-term and long-term goals for the permanent border community.
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors remains committed to working with federal and non-governmental stakeholders to effectively address this ongoing humanitarian crisis.