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DHS Secretary Mayorkas visits Yuma

Mayorkas gives his thoughts on current situation at the border - KYMA's Arlette Yousif met with Sec. Mayorkas to discuss the border crisis

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, Department of Homeland Security, met with Yuma County officials, non-profit organizations, and Yuma Sector Border Patrol to understand the needs of our community as we continue to see high numbers of undocumented immigrants cross the border in our very own backyard.

"We are building a humane orderly and safe immigration system. We continue to enforce the law, both the law of accountability and the law of humanitarian relief. We are doing so not alone but in a bilateral and a multilateral relationship with other countries. We are dealing with irregular migration from beginning all the way through the process. Bringing efficiency, order, and humanity throughout," says Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

This while hundreds of undocumented immigrants continue to cross into Yuma County daily.

"As you know, we’ve seen some increases over the last year and a half along the southwest border and so it’s important for us to be able to take this information back to Washington D.C. and work on some of those issues," explains U.S. Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz.

Secretary Mayorkas met with Yuma Sector Border Patrol Agents.

Some agents expressed that Yuma needs more help.

Sources mentioned things got tense during the meeting with agents, but neither side wanted to speak on the matter.

"One of my big priorities is to get out in the field, visit with the workforce, communicate to them what we’re doing for them and to hear importantly from the workforce what we, what more we can do and what they’re experiencing and I must say, here in Yuma, it’s extraordinary the dedication and talent of the men and women of the United States Border Patrol," says Mayorkas.

And Chief Ortiz adds to the efforts…

"So, what we need to do is bring some connectivity between the border patrol enforcement systems, and the ice enforcement systems, and our enforcement systems with the health and human services, especially as we deal with some of the family units and unaccompanied children," explains Ortiz.

In addition to Yuma Sector agents working tirelessly around the clock, resources for non-profit organizations are going fast.

"One of the things that we’re very focused on with the non-profit community is not only resourcing them but also, we have built an entire architecture where they can deliver services and then we can reimburse them for the cost that they incur through our FEMA program," says Mayorkas.

Secretary Mayorkas is heading to Texas next to see how dire the situation is in El Paso and Loredo before heading back to Washington to report his findings to the Biden Administration.

Below is the interview with DHS Sec. Mayorkas:

Interview with U.S. Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz:

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Marcos Icahuate

Reach out to Marcos with your story ideas at marcos.icahuate@kecytv.com.

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Arlette Yousif

Arlette Yousif joined KYMA in November 2020 as a Multi Media Journalist. She holds a BA in Journalism with a minor in Film.

You can reach out to Arlette for at arlette.yousif@kecytv.com.

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