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Immigrants still crossing into Arizona despite Title 42 extension

Posted at 9:14 PM, May 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-24 00:14:58-04

YUMA — A federal judge may have delayed ending Title 42, but it is not reducing the number of people trying to get into the U.S. along the Arizona border.

On Monday, just outside of Yuma immigrants wait along a levee for the border patrol.

"I am from Salvador," says Sylvia, who with her daughter said she has traveled 4 months to make it to the U.S. "My country has a lot of violence. and gangs and all of that," she said. "Here you can fight for a better life for your family."

Sylvia and her daughter were among a large group of asylum seekers, more than 1,300 Saturday, hundreds more Sunday, who crossed into Arizona near Yuma over the weekend.

Indragit, who is from Napal was among those who arrived Sunday evening. "Please help the people who have small babies, the scorching heat, please help," he said.

Yuma has become the grand central station for immigrants arriving on Arizona's border.

Asylum seekers who are allowed to enter the U.S. because Mexico will not allow them to stay there under Title 42, are processed and then sent Humanitarian groups who help arrange transportation and then bus the immigrants to Sky Harbor Airport.

There, they catch a flight to where their relatives live and stay with them while awaiting the outcome of their asylum claim.

"They need to be reflective of current immigration patterns and then they need to follow up with strong policies," Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls says the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is starting to provide more help along the border. But more boots on the ground alone, the Mayor warns, will not stop asylum seekers from coming.

Nicholls says, "there needs to be a clear message going out that the border is not open."