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We face a humanitarian and security crisis
By Kirstjen Nielsen
USA Today
January 9, 2019

There is a humanitarian and security crisis at our southwest border. It is getting worse, and a “status quo” response from Congress — inadequate authorities, insufficient funds and indifference to the chaos — will not cut it.

What we do know is that the smuggling of deadly drugs such as fentanyl — which kills thousands every year — is on the rise.
We know that the large number of criminals includes thousands of convicted offenders and nearly 800 gang members caught trying to get across the southern border last year alone.

We are also facing a humanitarian catastrophe. For the first time, families and children make up the majority of those entering illegally. Why? Because word has gotten out that our broken legal framework will give them a “free pass” into the United States. This has dramatically changed the migrant flows, and it is a crisis because our system wasn’t built to handle it.

The trek has become a nightmare, with more than 30 percent of women reporting sexual assault along the way and 70 percent of all migrants reporting violence.

The situation is serious. We hope Congress will get serious, too.

Read the full op-ed here.