In a troubling trend gaining momentum across the United States, political leaders are increasingly moving undocumented immigrants to other states and even deporting them abroad. If left unchecked, this approach to problem solving could easily expand beyond the area of migrants crossing the southern border to include broader societal problems, such as trying to deport homeless people, drug users, and even criminals elsewhere. The solution lies in a more concerted federal effort to address the root problem of undocumented immigrants arriving in the U.S. before the practice of deportation problems becomes the accepted norm in American society.
Denver as an example
Take the city of Denver and what it does as a good starting point for this topic. Last year, more than 12,000 immigrants arrived in Denver and then chose to continue their journey to other US cities. NBC News report, chose this route because of Denver’s relative proximity to the border, its reputation for hospitality, and cheaper transportation fares. In an effort to free up its beds for new arrivals, Denver spent at least $4.3 million in municipal funds to send immigrants to other US cities without prior agreement. Unfortunately, this approach shifts the burden to Democratic-led cities like Chicago and New York, straining their resources as northern cities struggle to house new asylum seekers.
Abbott, DeSantis Ship Off Migrants
The phenomenon of political leaders ferrying immigrants to other states began last year when Republican governors in Texas and Florida chartered buses and planes to ferry immigrants to Democratic-led cities. Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s office, for example, show up Not long ago, the state bused more than 50,000 migrants to cities including Washington, New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Denver and Los Angeles over the past year to highlight concerns about its border policies. Biden administration. With their resources now dwindling, some of these receiving cities are in turn helping migrants reach other final destinations. For example, cities like Chicago, through organizations like Archdiocese Catholic Charities, have used state funds to buy tickets for more than 2,500 immigrants who have family, friends or sponsors elsewhere. These exporting cities claim that they only buy tickets for migrants who wish to travel voluntarily and do not force anyone to leave.
The pressure of immigrants from all over the world is increasing
Regardless of how appropriate the approach to these newcomers is, these efforts underscore the growing pressure on cities as increasing numbers of immigrants from worldwide seek refuge through the southern US border, often escaping economic instability or simply dangerous conditions back home. Illegal border crossings topped 2 million during the past fiscal year, the second highest number on record.
The risk discussed here lies in the unsustainable nature of transporting migrants from one place to another. Aside from issues like medical forum shopping by immigrants looking for the best treatments wherever they can get them, for example, it raises the question of how long it will be before cities like New York consider rounding up homeless people and offering them free rides in Miami or Chicago does the same with drug users in Los Angeles. This trend is alarming and unsustainable and raises important ethical and logistical questions.
Rishi Sunak Solution
Furthermore, even more extreme and opportunistic solutions have been proposed to solve these “undesirable problems”. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak tried to deport 4,000 asylum seekers to Rwanda until the High Court stopped the plan. The court questioned Rwanda’s viability as a country that offers safe and adequate protection to those who may be deported. Meanwhile, here in the United States, New York City is now offering undocumented immigrants one-way plane tickets to anywhere in the world. Similarly, concerns were raised earlier this year when New York City-sponsored migrants took buses to the northern border and ended up in Canada. Even more radical approaches include sending immigrants to makeshift tent camps in the California desert or abolishing the asylum system entirely. Such proposals and programs demonstrate a desire to shift responsibility for dealing with immigrant populations elsewhere rather than to address the issue fairly and humanely where it has arisen in America. It is contrary to our democratic ideals and the international legal commitments made by America and other democratic nation states.
A human alternative is needed
To find a more reasonable and humane alternative, the United States should consider developing a federally coordinated response to the immigrant problem. That approach would involve political leaders from immigrant-saturated states, leaders from immigrant-receiving states and officials responsible for federal immigration policy coming together to formulate a national strategy to address the issue. This concerted effort appears to be the most rational and sustainable solution to a complex problem that is unlikely to go away anytime soon.
It is imperative that the United States, as a nation, live up to its democratic ideals and international obligations and adopt a more coordinated and humane approach to addressing the challenges posed by undocumented immigrants. Failure to do so risks perpetuating a cycle of burden-shifting that will ultimately harm both the individuals affected and undermine the values the nation holds dear.