Rep. Peters Votes to Provide Emergency Funds to Care for Children and Families Seeking Asylum at the Border
June 26, 2019
Today, Rep. Scott Peters (CA-52) helped pass an emergency spending bill to help address the ongoing humanitarian crisis at the southern border. The bill provides $4.5 billion for essential care and services to the families and children seeking asylum at the border, upgrades for processing facilities, and requires medical and legal assistance in accordance with the law. It also requires the Trump Administration to use funds already provided by Congress to aid the Northern Triangle countries of Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador – foreign aid that the Trump Administration attempted to unilaterally revoke earlier this year.
“The bottom of the Statue of Liberty says ‘give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.’ That is the spirit of America. We welcome men, women, and children who seek safety and security. The Trump Administration has betrayed those values and left families and children to endure horrific conditions—children wearing snot- and tear-covered clothing and sleeping on concrete floors, without showers or soap. While I continue to demand answers and hold the administration accountable for this mistreatment, this emergency funding will help ensure migrants receive the basic care all of us deserve. We also must work with our allies and neighbors in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador to address the persistent causes of this migration: economic hardships that lead to high unemployment and criminal activity, which cause families to flee for their lives,” said Rep. Peters.
The bill includes funding for programs that support localities that provide care to migrants and programs that offer alternatives to detention:
- $60 million for the Federal Emergency Management Agency to reimburse communities like San Diego, that continue to help provide vital care to migrants
- Nearly $1 billion to upgrade processing facilities, food, water, sanitary items, blankets, and medical services
- $100 million for legal services and child advocates programs
- $20 million for alternatives to detention like ankle bracelets or daily check-ins
- $212 million to expand capacity in smaller-sized shelters that are state-licensed and recommended by child welfare experts