Tens of thousands of illegal immigrants are being released each month in an attempt to reduce the massive amount of processing and packed detention centers.
More than 1,000 illegal immigrant family members are being set free into border states each day because the government simply cannot handle the load, The Washington Times reported.
In the past three months alone, approximately 107,000 families have been apprehended at the border and then let go. Some have been given tethers, some must check in periodically, and some have been given court dates or deportation dates, with the hope that they comply.
ICE detainment centers only have 2,500 beds to detain immigrant families. Those beds are normally designated for single mother families, and when room runs out, the “catch-and-release” practice comes into play, the Epoch Times stated.
The agency is so overwhelmed with immigrant processing that officers have been taken from prisons or jails to assist ICE detainment centers in releasing the immigrants.
Nathalie R. Asher, acting executive associate director for Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s deportation division, said, “The current crisis that is occurring at the southwest border, the numbers that we collectively as a nation are seeing … is absolutely unprecedented.”
Asher added that her agency has struggled to reallocate resources to deal with the climbing number of illegal immigrants flooding the southern border. ICE has had to cut back on its efforts in the interior of the U.S.
— The Epoch Times (@EpochTimes) March 22, 2019
“I want to cut through the politics today to tell you loud and clear: There is no ‘manufactured’ crisis at our southern border. There is a real-life humanitarian and security catastrophe. The situation at our southern border has gone from a crisis, to a national emergency, to a near system-wide meltdown,” said Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.
ICE officials detained about 76,000 illegal immigrants in February alone, and project that number will increase to 100,000 in March.
Nielsen said, “The system is breaking, and our communities, our law enforcement personnel, and the migrants themselves are paying the price.”
Nielsen also previously projected that nearly one million illegal immigrants would be apprehended by the end of the year.
“Individuals are going to fight their case to the end, quite frankly, and not so readily take their removal orders,” Asher said.
The process of deportation can take as long as four years if the migrants appear in court and claim to fear for their lives if deported.