, 23 tweets, 17 min read Read on Twitter
Up until three weeks ago I was a #border/ #immigration reporter working in #ElPaso. Let me tell you why President Trump’s visit to the #Borderland is so problematic. Follow this thread for more.
Honestly, @DrToddACurry put it best. #ElPaso has been the President’s “petri dish” for #immigration policies. Let’s take a look shall we?
Starting Sept.2017 @LasAmericasIAC starts reporting parent/children separation, despite legal documents showing relation. There was little I, as a journalist, could do when both parent & child were out of reach for interview & @ICEgov wasn’t talking.
Jocelyn & her son, became plaintiffs in a case against the Trump Administration’s policy. The lawsuit ruled that family separation be brought to an end.

After the policy was officially announced April 2018, then public outrage & a lawsuit forced it to shut down by summer, I interviewed families that were recently reunited. These 3-4 years old were finally back in their parent’s arms.
1st case we heard was about 8mo before official announcement of #ZeroTolerance that led to family separation. Report from @USGAO confirms #ElPaso sector was used as pilot before going into practice Fall '17, months before official announcement April '18.
We have reports of feds who reportedly used coercion tactics, like temporarily reunited parents with children, to persuade them to sign self-deportation papers. Just to give you an idea of what was happening under the #ZeroTolerance policy.

And if you’re wondering whether family separation has finally finished, as it was supposed to Summer 2018, it hasn’t. @AHouseElPaso @LasAmericasIAC @BobMooreNews will tell you so.
Let’s talk about Ports of Entry now shall we? Starting Summer 2018 @CBPWestTexas started reporting that the influx of #asylum seekers was too much to keep the rest of the POE in order so they had to start a ‘metering’ process.
This led groups like @AHouseElPaso to start joining asylum seekers at the bridge as they present themselves to CBP Officers. Asylum seekers have a right to make claim when they touch US soil.
Over the summer & again in Oct. long lines started forming at international bridges as asylum seekers waited for openings at POE to make their initial claim. That only starts the process & doesn’t mean claim will be approved by #immigration judge. cbs4local.com/news/local/abo…
This led to large groups of migrants presenting themselves between Ports of Entry because #BorderPatrol has to react & apprehend people when they illegally cross the border. That’s a misdemeanor & asylum claims can still be made.

Groups eventually started being transported to more remote areas like #AntelopeWells & bootheel of #NewMexico where #BorderPatrol & the state has fewer resources.
Eventually #JakelinCaal was among one of the groups smugglers took to the bootheel of #NewMexico where medical resources are few & far between for anyone in the area.

Smugglers from Guatemala are now actively using this route to #NewMexico to convince #immigrants that now is the time to go for the #AmericanDream. In reality they’re endangering migrants.
And remember #BorderPatrol is actively trying to recruit more agents however the federal government has spent millions of taxpayer dollars on an agency that isn’t exactly fulfilling its promise to boost recruitment.

Let’s talk @ICEgov & what they did to the city of #ElPaso over #Christmas break shall we? Starting late night Dec. 23 as temperatures were dropping 200 #immigrants were dropped at the downtown bus station pulling @EPPolice & @SunMetro resources.
.@AHouseElPaso had to scramble as they had already scheduled to receive 200 immigrants that night and were taken by surprise with the additional 200 dumped downtown. They had to find housing & volunteers last minute.
Dec.24 another apprx. 200 more #immigrants were released again downtown w/o notice to @AHouseElPaso. The beauty was #ElPaso coming out in full force to bring together food & resources.
And for a third day in a row on #Christmas day more immigrants were released w/ ICE once again failing to properly coordinate with @AHouseElPaso who has been collaborating w/ the federal agency for years.
In case you were wondering, while the costs were “minimal” to the @ElPasoTXGov there were still costs incurred by this lack of communication from ICE.
There is so much more to be said about this administration & the policies that have affected the #ElPaso & greater #Borderland area like #Tornillo tent city or that the President incorrectly uses the city as an example for the wall dismissing local & federal law enforcement.
What you can do is follow great reporters on the ground that will be at the events today in #ElPaso & see how the city is reacting to this visit. @i_p_a_1 @bobmoorenews @SalgadoPhoto_ @kint_dalinag @tornandra. And support #immigration groups like @AHouseElPaso @LasAmericasIAC
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