Immigration has been a central issue throughout the duration of the 2016 Presidential race, and many south of the border may be feeling a little anxious about the prospect of a wall being built. We’ve recently seen a spike in the number of apprehensions at the border. Apprehensions of children and their families since October 2015 have more than doubled from a year ago and now outnumber apprehensions of unaccompanied children, a figure that also increased this year, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Customs and Border Protection data.
Ahead of the election, during the month of October, the apprehensions of family unit aliens increased by nearly 37 percent over September, according to information obtained from U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The number of apprehensions jumped from 39,501 in September to 46,195 in October, according to U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson. For comparison, according to ICE Statistics the number of apprehensions made at the border in all of the fiscal year of 2015 is 165,935 — or an average of about 14,000 a month. Far less than the record numbers we’re seeing now.
But now that the election is over the numbers have spiked once again, in the form of a jump in individuals in our immigration detention facilities. Typically the number of those detained is about 31,000 but as of November there are currently 41,000 individuals detained. “Recently, we have seen an increase in the numbers of those apprehended on the southern border. I have instructed our border security and immigration enforcement personnel to take steps to keep pace with this increase,” Jeh Johnson said in a statement on Wednesday.
He continued, “I have authorized ICE to acquire additional detention space so that those apprehended at the border and not eligible for humanitarian relief can be detained and sent home as soon as possible. We must enforce the immigration laws consistent with our priorities. Those who attempt to enter our country illegally must know that, consistent with our laws and our values, we must and we will send you back. ” Currently it’s unclear whether the increase in the number of those being apprehended is a result of the DHS ramping up efforts or it’s just more people actually trying to enter the country. Could people be trying to enter because it’s possible there might be a wall soon? It would make sense given Trump’s win was such a surprise -people might be concerned that if they don’t make the trip now, they might not ever be able to.