EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — With the termination of Migrant Protection Protocols, also known as the Remain in Mexico program, El Paso is expecting to receive 25 migrants on Friday afternoon.
The first group of people will be those waiting in Juarez, Mexico for several years to be able to cross.
Local organization and shelter Annunciation House will be housing the migrants once they enter the country.
Ruben Garcia, executive director of Annunciation House said, “we’re going to assist them to contact family members that are across the country. Those family members will purchase bus tickets or plane tickets and then they will be on their way.”
According to Garcia, the vast majority of asylum seekers are expected to stay in El Paso no longer than four days before they proceed further in the country.
“It’s probably one of the most humanitarian things that we can possibly do,” said Ricardo Samaniego, El Paso County Judge during a press conference on Thursday, reassuring El Pasoans that they are prepared to receive the migrants and do it safely.
Before entering the country all asylum seekers will be tested for COVID-19. Once they test negative, they will be allowed to enter the country and proceed to the Annunciation House shelter.
“There’s a long way we need to go and there’s still actions that we need to take, we still haven’t fully restored asylum at the border, we’re just beginning to do that,” said Dylan Corbett, executive director of Hope Border Institute, one of the organizations helping migrants in El Paso.
Starting on Monday, 25 migrants will be let into the country each day, but with the second week of March that number will go up to 50 and 75 over time.