A Texas mayor is asking President Joe Biden to think about the reality he is creating with policies that are increasing the numbers of illegal immigrants turned loose in local communities.
“I am pleading and requesting with you to please put a halt to any measures regarding the release of immigrants awaiting court dates into the city of Del Rio and surrounding areas,” City of Del Rio Mayor Bruno Lozano, a Democrat, said in a video posted to YouTube. Del Rio is located near the border between Texas and Mexico.
The video was also shared via Facebook amid notices seeking to help citizens access critical services in the wake of the weather disaster that left much of Texas in a deep freeze without heat, power or water.
Lozano was responding not only to the weather, but also to Biden’s decision to implement the so-called “catch-and-release” policy along the border in which illegal immigrants who are detained will be released into nearby communities until they can have a court hearing on their immigration status.
Lozano said his community has had enough.
“We do not have the resources available to house and accommodate these migrants within our community,” he said.
“I will have no choice but to use the extreme measures under the emergency declaration as the mayor of the City of Del Rio, Texas, to refuse the entry of migrants awaiting court dates into the city of Del Rio,” Lozano said. “If you do send these individuals into our community, we will be forced to make a decision to leave them without resources under these dire circumstances.
“I am asking to please stop. Please make another plan for this federal issue,” he pleaded.
“If you are going to allow these individuals into our community, I respectfully ask that you please provide the means and the supplies necessary to accommodate them safely under these extreme circumstances,” Lozano added. “Due to the crisis, we cannot provide these supplies.”
Lozano said his community needs help.
“We are asking for supplies, water and … equal distribution of electrical power in our community,” he said, noting that as of Wednesday, when he filmed his message, there was no assurance of when the community would again have power.
“We have been outsourcing dialysis treatments for our in-need persons in our community,” he said. “We have had to relocate the elderly who are in need of power for oxygen tanks. We are completely and utterly spread thin with resources for our own community. With the extreme weather conditions and icy roads, we are limited with what we can bring in to our community.”
Del Rio cannot care for additional people, Lozano said.
“Our nonprofits, our churches are running thin with resources to provide to our very own citizens,” the mayor said. “Additionally, we have been burdened with the inadequate communication systems throughout the entire area, which has impacted our ability to respond and coordinate limited resources and distribution.”
Lozano said he will not risk the health of members of his community.
“This administration has taken a firm stance on COVID-19 protections for Americans. I am asking you to ensure the health and safety of all of our taxpaying citizens along the border are treated with the same urgent consideration. Releasing the migrant population without any COVID-19 protection protocols is undermining your commitment to this stance against COVID-19,” he said.
He said warehousing migrants in the city’s municipal buildings is not possible because that is also where the at-risk members of his community go for COVID-19 vaccinations.
“I cannot mix the migrant population with Del Rio residents that are extremely vulnerable and have been displaced due to the extreme weather,” he said.
“We may be a small town that is off of your radar, but we have [a] community of 50,000 people who need your attention,” he said. “We are requesting that you please listen and that you please come through. Thank you, Mr. President.”
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