The overwhelming number of illegal immigrants flooding over the southern border into El Paso is causing chaos and severe overcrowding at the Rescue Mission of El Paso (RMEP). With funding coming mainly from grants supplied by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), RMEP is struggling to cope with the never-ending stream of undocumented migrants whom the Border Patrol releases supposedly to alleviate congestion at holding cells. RMEP provides three meals a day and sleeping facilities for the processed and released migrants, and currently, its facilities are almost at capacity at 225 capacity even before Title 42 is officially no longer enforced starting on May 11.
Spent time at an El Paso migrant shelter yesterday and they are always near capacity before Title 42 is officially gone.
“For us, we have the capacity of about 225…But that's 225 when thousands are released a day, so it's just a drop in the bucket.”https://t.co/7sA8JSEpaY
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) May 9, 2023
Nicole Reulet, RMEP’s marketing director, described it as a “crisis” and admitted to putting people in wherever there was space, including conference rooms and the kitchen. Thousands of illegal immigrants are being released by the Border Patrol daily, and RMEP is just a drop in the bucket, Reulet said, raising concerns about how to keep children safe from harm.
According to RMEP’s personnel, most of the women and children have endured sexual harassment, abuse, and even rape from the human traffickers and criminals they pay to bring them into the US illegally. Some volunteers report that children admitted to RMEP have undergone traumatic experiences and take at least three to four days to revert to a “normal” state.
El Paso City leaders question the credibility of the Biden Administration, saying they should have been better prepared for the questions of the surge in illegal crossings, particularly with the understanding of the impending lifting of Title 42. The administration should be more proactive in its approach and better plan to extensively scrutinize those who avoid the legal and secure crossing points. The overflowing of RMEP’s facilities is one case in point that highlights the present administration’s failings.