Arizona Joins the Bussing Effort But Still Misses the Boat
On May 11, 2022, Arizona’s Governor Doug Ducey announced that his State will join Texas in bussing migrants from the Southern Border area to Washington, D.C. The press release announcing the decision states:
With Arizona community resources under all-time demand, and little action or assistance from the federal government, individuals who entered Arizona seeking asylum have the opportunity to voluntarily be transported to Washington, D.C. The transportation will include meals, and onboard staffing and support.
We have previously reported on Texas’ effort to transport migrants to Washington, D.C. as a protest to the federal government; a plan that quickly backfired as migrants were nothing but thankful for the free ride. Arizona now quietly joins in, and the results will likely be the same.
In both cases, Texas and now Arizona, States are missing the boat on a huge opportunity to remedy a failure of the federal government to provide migrants with destination counseling, rather than just a free ride to nowhere. Resources should be allocated to counseling asylum-seekers, who must wait close to four years for their day in court, about which jurisdictions they can live a life with dignity in. The rights and resources afforded to migrants vary greatly among the States. Migrants should be fully informed for their own wellbeing and safety while they navigate the U.S. legal system.
New migrants are amongst the most vulnerable populations, as they do not have a means to earn income for food and shelter while in the United States. Many do not speak English and are hard-pressed when finding help. As we reported before, this leads many migrants into dangerous situations. Migrants are uniquely susceptible to rape and forced labor while living in the shadows. Yes, this happens in America. That is why it is crucial that new migrants be given information on where and how they can access resources that are available to them.
These are two areas Ayúdame Nonprofit specializes in: offering its Destination Counseling Program (DCP) and Resource Referral Network (RRN) absolutely free to asylum-seekers and new migrants. Ayúdame Nonprofit employs active engagement to ensure that necessary information and resources are getting to the people that need it most. Staff and volunteers travel to the Southern Border area, and detention facilities, to interact with migrants and ensure help is on the way. The boat is here, and state governments are missing it.