RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas – A bi-partisan gathering to announce a plan to help alleviate the high stress of the immigration system caused by the influx of migrants along the southern border. 

Today, Senator John Cornyn and Representative Henry Cuellar announce what they’re calling the
Helping Unaccompanied Minors and Alleviating National Emergency Act (HUMANE ACT). 
It’s a plan designed to “solve the ongoing humanitarian crisis.”

The proposed bill calls for 600 CBP personnel and at least two immigration judges at each of the regional processing Centers.

The HUMANE ACT looks to prioritize the unification of family units and processing of unaccompanied minors. And that last part worries some in the Rio Grande Valley. Back in 2014, organizations like La Union De El Pueblo Entero (LUPE) were following a version of the HUMANE Act. Some of their concerns about deportation remain on the new act as well.

LUPE Spokesperson John Michael Torres says, “This bill is anything but humane. This bill would put fast paced deportations, people who are in vulnerable situations.”  During our conversation, Torres tells us he is glad to see a larger emphasis on family unification and protections for unaccompanied minors. However, he is not convinced that the HUMANE Act will fully solve many of the current immigration problems. 

Meanwhile, organizations across the Rio Grande Valley continue to raise supplies to help the local shelters taking immigrants as a result of over-capacity detention centers.

Social Worker at Valley Baptist Medical Center in Brownsville Norma Arismendi is part of a collection drive to help Brownsville Shelters. She says, “They’ve had increase of need due to the immigrants that are coming over… we wanted to reach out to our community…”

Arismendi says they’ve had great support from the community. They will continue to collect supplies at the Hospital’s Lobby until Friday May the 3rd at 7 PM. They are located at 1040 W. Jefferson Street in Brownsville, TX 78520.