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Migrants Protest as Mayorkas Defends Biden’s Immigration Policies

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Joe Biden’s immigration policy has been criticized since he took office as president of the United States. The administration of Biden and Kamala Harris has been facing a border crisis since it began and has not been able to control it. This week, there have been protests by migrants.

The situation occurred at a time when migrants were evicted from a hotel where they were sheltered and when the arrival of illegal immigrants increased due to Democratic policies.

EFE news agency explained on Monday that Venezuelan immigrants who recently arrived in New York had been sleeping on the streets for several days, despite the winter cold, in protest of having been evicted from the hotel in Manhattan that served as their shelter, to be sent to another shelter that, according to them, does not meet the conditions to live in.

“There is no heating there and it’s getting cold, the mattresses are sinking, the beds are too close together and you don’t know who you have next to you; there is nowhere to keep your belongings and you have to cross the street to bathe and stand in line,” several immigrants, some of whom have previously passed through other shelters provided by the Mayor’s Office, told the news agency.

Migrants protest as Mayorkas defends Biden's immigration policies, EFE
Photograph of a Venezuelan immigrant evicted from the Watson Hotel camping outside the building in protest today, in New York (EFE).

Migrant arrivals

According to media estimates, the city has received at least 42,000 immigrants in recent months who have been placed in shelters that have ended up full, forcing the Mayor’s Office to house them in hotels.

“The Mayor’s Office began sending buses to pick them up, as happened on Monday, and take them to their new destination at the cruise ship terminal in Brooklyn, converted into a temporary shelter for single men. The Watson Hotel, now vacated, will be used to house families with children,” Efe detailed.

Eric Salgado, representative of the Office of Immigrant Affairs, arrived at the site and listened to the complaints. He then reminded them that the hotel, like the shelter, is only a transitory place while they find a place for them.

Several Republican leaders had already warned about the crisis posed by the arrival of illegal migrants, spurred by the actions and speeches of the Democrats. Last year, Senators Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham denounced the mismanagement of Alejandro Mayorkas.

In a letter to Mayorkas, obtained by Fox News, Republicans showed data released by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) revealing that the crisis at the southern border has deepened since Mayorkas took office 19 months ago.

“Your failure to faithfully enforce this nation’s immigration laws and willful blindness to the very real humanitarian crisis at our southern border amounts to a gross dereliction of duty and a violation of your oath of office,” the senators said.

Despite protests from migrants, the border crisis and criticism from Republicans, Mayorkas insists on praising the immigration policies of the Democrats. This Monday, the Homeland Security Secretary affirmed in Miami that the humanitarian program for Cubans, Venezuelans, Haitians and Nicaraguans implemented since the beginning of January has supposedly reduced by 90% the irregular arrival of illegal migrants and he called incomprehensible a lawsuit filed to stop it.

Williams Perdomo es periodista y escritor, especializado en las fuentes Política y Cultura.