Report: Biden Administration Has Spent $3 Billion On Migrant Facility Contracts

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The Biden administration has reportedly spent $3 billion to house unaccompanied children at the US’ southern border — as it continues to grapple with the unprecedented influx of migrants coming to the border each day.

According to the Associated Press, the government has awarded approximately $3 billion in contracts since February, with more than $2 billion in “no-bid” contracts going to three recipients.

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Reports noted that these companies used to work as national disaster respondents and establish Covid-19 related-quarantine centers. However, as the United States has been dealing with record numbers of unaccompanied minors, they have begun to build shelters too.

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Just in March, 18,890 unaccompanied children were reportedly encountered by Border Patrol officials, representing a 100% increase over February’s already high numbers — which is also the highest number ever registered.

Last week, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said that officials were already seeing about 270 children crossing the border every day.

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“We’re down to about 1,830 people per day right now,” Mayorkas said referring to the daily encounters at the border. 

“Unfortunately, we’re still seeing a fairly high population of migrant children are coming across 270 a day right now, the last 21 days.”

The Biden  administration has blamed the unprecedented migrant surge on “root causes” such as crime, poverty, and climate change, as well as what the Democratic administration claims are the former Trump administration’s perceived lack of preparedness to deal with the influx.

Critics have blamed the rollback of Trump-era policies, as well as the decision of the Democratic administration not to apply Title 42  which allows officials to quickly expel undocumented migrants to prevent the spread of the virus in holding facilities — to unaccompanied children.

It resulted in images of children being dropped and abandoned by smugglers in crowded Border Patrol facilities, as well as images of children being dropped and abandoned by smugglers in harsh environments.

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Although some facilities, such as those in Donna, Texas, have now been emptied, the number of children in the care of the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has increased from 11,000 in March to 22,000 in May. 

The Biden administration has been rapidly establishing facilities on both sides of the border, including military bases. Critics have voiced concern about how migrants are handled, including a lack of media access, among others. 

The Democratic administration has also received backlash for easing border policies — which allowed migrants to easily enter American communities in the first place.

Meanwhile, the government is also paying for children’s travel to their sponsors, as well as adult sponsors’ visits to pick up minors that have been put in their care.

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Vice President Kamala Harris, who has been charged with using diplomatic means to resolve the crisis, recently met virtually with Guatemalan and Mexican leaders and is set to travel to both countries next month.

 

Source material can be found at this site.

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