While the recent release of hundreds of asylum seekers from immigration detention centers in Yuma, Phoenix and Tucson brings relief from the degradation of incarceration, it also brings problems. With almost no money, clothing, food, or supplies at their disposal, asylum seekers need shelter and assistance as they prepare to travel to their sponsors to await their court dates. Wearing ankle bracelets, families need to travel all over the country, at the same time that Greyhound is cutting routes to half capacity. Churches and shelters and individuals are striving to meet the sudden and urgent needs.
U.S.-based asylum seekers are not the only seekers from whom immense endurance is required. Currently, families on the Mexican side of the border, many from Central America, must stand, sit or lie in line, on concrete, for as many as 15 days to get processed. Under any circumstances, waiting stretches patience. Given the rigors of the trip behind them, concerns for their children and wondering what might lie ahead, one sees people determined to flee extreme situations. And one sees people of great courage and great belief that a fair and just opportunity may await in the United States.
We will do what we can to support asylum seekers on both sides of our border.
- Amy and Laurie