Unusually high illegal immigration in January and February at the U.S.-Mexico border has put fiscal year 2019 on pace to experience the highest levels of unauthorized migration in a decade.
Roughly 58,000 migrants were detained at the U.S. southern border in January. Preliminary figures show the rate is only climbing, with over 70,000 recorded migrant apprehensions in February. In fact, one day in February made history as being the largest number of “family unit apprehensions” ever recorded on a single day. The Department of Homeland Security is expecting even larger numbers for March and April, putting 2019 in position to witness record levels of illegal immigration.
“The numbers are staggering, and we’re incredibly worried that we will see another huge increase in March,” a Homeland Security Official said to The Washington Post.
Critics of President Donald Trump’s emergency declaration for the southern border point out that these numbers, while they are rising, are still historically lower than the levels of illegal immigration seen in the early 1990s and 2000s. However, it’s the type of illegal immigration, border patrol officials say, that is causing the crisis.