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Congresswoman Escobar Statement on White House Homeland Security Advisor Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall’s Visit to El Paso

Congresswoman Veronica Escobar (TX-16) issued the following statement after hosting President Joe Biden’s Homeland Security Advisor Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall:

“The best way to learn about the border and our community is to personally experience all it has to offer. El Paso has found itself – as it has for many years – as a focal point in the conversation about immigration and border security. I appreciate Dr. Sherwood-Randall’s visit today to El Paso, meeting key stakeholders, reaffirming the Biden administration’s commitment to addressing the challenge of increasing migration and ensuring localities and non-governmental organizations in our region are reimbursed through the FEMA Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) for the logistical, transportation, staffing and shelter needs that come from migrant care. I have always been an advocate of the EFSP program and will continue to work with our city and county leaders to ensure they are reimbursed for the work they are doing.

Dr. Sherwood-Randall and I had the opportunity to meet with business and trade stakeholders to discuss the impacts of border security policy on our local economy and engage with immigration advocates who work directly with vulnerable populations and provide legal services. We visited the El Paso Healing Garden Memorial, toured an Annunciation House migrant shelter with County Judge Samaniego and Mayor Oscar Leeser, and toured the Paso Del Norte Bridge. We saw the challenges facing our immigration courts and the mounting backlog of a broken immigration system and discussed how we can reimagine how we approach processing at the U.S. Border Patrol Central Processing Center.

I again call on my Congressional colleagues to legislate. We must reform outdated immigration laws and create policies that meet the challenges of today and tomorrow. As the Republican party continues to spew dangerous, inflammatory, xenophobic rhetoric about immigrants and communities along the border, it is my hope that get to work with us to fix a broken system. I felt it was critical to show to Dr. Sherwood-Randall what our border community truly looks like and how we as a community continue to lead with love and compassion and I’m grateful to the White House for this visit.”

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