As Americans anxiously await the ability to “return to normal,” COVID-19 positive migrants are reportedly flooding across the U.S.-Mexico border, threatening the progress that’s being made via vaccines.
According to The Washington Times,
Migrant families coming across the border are testing positive for the coronavirus at between three and 10 times the rate of the U.S. population, according to a Washington Times survey of jurisdictions that are doing the testing.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement told The Times that the families it is processing are between 5% and 10% positive.
In Brownsville, Texas, the city says it is seeing a 12% positive rate.
And in Harlingen, near Brownsville, the homeless shelter where families are being dropped off reported a group at 25% positive for COVID-19. That’s more than seven times the current positivity test rate for the U.S. public, which Johns Hopkins University’s tracker shows at 3.5%.
The news comes as the Biden administration reports the U.S. is on pace to encounter more individuals on the southwest border than we have in the last 20 years.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the administration’s policy is for “COVID-19 testing to be done at the state and local level and with the help of NGOs and local governments.” However, local authorities say that’s not happening.
Sheriff A.J. Louderback in Jackson County told The Washington Times that “thousands of migrants have still been released without any testing,” and suggested the administration is “lying” about what’s happening along the Southern border.
A spokesperson for the city of Brownsville told NBC “that they do not have the authority to retain these migrants,” despite testing positive for COVID-19.
For those entering the United States legally via air travel, the Biden administration appears to have mandated more strict standards than those being applied to migrants entering illegally: “All air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before they board a flight to the United States,” the CDC states.
The vast majority of Americans agree that the Biden administration should provide safe and sensible COVID-19 border policies. According to a Just the News Daily poll with Scott Rasmussen released Monday, 90% of voters want illegal immigrants tested for COVID-19 at the border before being allowed to leave to travel to other communities throughout the country.
“The sentiments were shared widely across all cross-sections of Americans,” reports Just The News. “For instance, 92% of whites and Hispanics agreed illegal immigrants should be screened for COVID as did 83% of black voters. Likewise, 94% of Republicans supporting COVID testing as did 90% of Democrats.”
Given the potential of new strains of the coronavirus coming into the U.S. that spread more rapidly and are more contagious, along with the possibility of vaccines being less effective against them, it’s dangerous and reckless to allow migrants into the U.S. without strict testing and quarantine requirements. If Americans ever want to return to normal, the Biden administration must do better.