EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – As Juarez shelters near capacity due to the arrival of new migrants and the expulsion of others from the United States, some El Paso Catholic organizations are stepping up to help.
On Monday, El Paso Catholic Diocese Bishop Mark J. Seitz and Hope Border Institute Executive Director Dylan Corbett visited three Juarez shelters to deliver $40,000 in emergency humanitarian aid through the Border Refugee Assistance Fund.
The money will fund emergency upgrades to accommodate and provide health services to families at Casa del Migrante, Albergue San Matias and the Kiki Romero Gym shelter.
Juarez news reports say Casa del Migrante, the city’s largest church-run shelter, is nearing capacity with 398 guests, while Kiki Romero is more than 80 percent full. Migrant advocates in El Paso say Trump-era policies picked up by the Biden administration are contributing to the problem.
“‘Remain in Mexico’ and Title 42 are causing human suffering. I invite people of faith and conscience across the country to raise their voices against these policies until we fully restore asylum at the border,” Seitz said.
Until that happens, he urged the public to “tear down walls of indifference” at the border by showing compassion and providing a place for the poor and vulnerable.
Remain in Mexico refers to the U.S. government’s Migrant Protection Protocols program, which makes asylum seekers wait in Mexico to be called to court dates in the United States. Title 42 is a public health order allowing for the immediate expulsion of non-exempt unauthorized migrants caught in the U.S.
The Border Refugee Assistance Fund in the past has allowed the groups to sponsor emergency vaccination clinics for migrant children. The fund has disbursed more than $300,000 in direct aid to migrants and shelters to date.
“Every person and every family who approaches the border has a story, has dignity and has the right to seek asylum. In the absence of action by the Biden administration, we will continue to advocate for more humane policies and to show through our solidarity that another way is possible,” Cobert of the Hope Border Institute said.