Senator brought together leaders from Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Arizona-based non-governmental organizations
WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema convened a virtual roundtable with key partners from Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and Arizona-based non-governmental organizations to discuss solutions to challenges caused by the ongoing crisis at the border.
“I was born and raised in southern Arizona, so for years I’ve seen first-hand the challenges at our southern border. Today, we brought Arizonans together to strengthen communication and coordination so we can find solutions as we work to secure the border, protect our communities, and ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely,” said Sinema, Chair of the Senate Border Management Subcommittee.
Sinema convened the virtual roundtable to identify solutions with key federal and local partners. Sinema focused the discussion on recent operational challenges throughout the state related to the continued high numbers of migrants crossing the border and how stakeholders can work together to secure the border, protect communities, and ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely.
Following Sinema’s work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to secure additional funding for migrant assistance, the government funding package released today includes $150 million for the migrant assistance portion of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program. When Sinema became Chair of the Border Management Subcommittee, her first hearing focused on the contributions and challenges experienced by non-governmental organizations operating at the border.
Sinema authored and led passage of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs law, which includes $115 million to fund the second half of the San Luis Port of Entry upgrade project, as well as $237.6 million for a new commercial land port of entry in Douglas and $202.5 million for modernization of all existing structures and expanding processing capacity at the existing Raul Hector Castro Port of Entry.
Last year, Sinema partnered with Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) to introduce their Bipartisan Border Solutions Act—legislation that improves the federal government’s response to the border crisis, reduces the impact on local border communities, and ensures migrants are treated fairly and humanely.
Sinema recently partnered with Republican Senator Susan Collins to introduce the bipartisan Asylum Seeker Work Authorization Act, which improves employment authorization for migrants who apply for asylum with verified identities and have no flags in federal databases.