A surge of migrants arriving at the Texas-Mexico border has pushed the country's immigration system to the breaking point as new policies aimed at both undocumented immigrants and legal asylum seekers have contributed to a humanitarian crisis. The Texas Tribune is maintaining its in-depth reporting on this national issue with support from the Pulitzer Center.
Vice President Mike Pence visited a migrant processing center in McAllen on Friday. According to reporters who accompanied him, the tour showed hundreds of men in cages without mats to sleep on, and some migrants hadn't showered in days.
Two Texas House committees met for hours to discuss the crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border. And some Democratic lawmakers said the state has a responsibility to provide humanitarian assistance. But what options they have remained unclear.
A steady stream of critical and detailed reports about the federal government's handling of migrants and children at the U.S.-Mexico border paint a vivid picture of what's going on. The source? The Office of Inspector General at the Department of Homeland Security.
More than a year after President Donald Trump ended the policy that led to widespread family separations, migrant advocates say the government continues separating children from parents for questionable reasons.
El Paso's backlogged immigration court recently halted programs designed to aid asylum seekers as they navigate a complicated legal system. "The confusion in the courtroom is palpable," says one advocate.
While announcing the number of migrants apprehended along America's southern border, the Trump administration also warned that the one-month change does not signal that the influx of people crossing is over.
Look at the immigration problem, at the issues on the border, at what lawmakers are doing in response and at the polling of what voters think. It looks like the fight might be more beneficial to the politicians than a solution would be.
"People have to speak up and they have to take action," Castro said of his decision to release footage of women detained in an El Paso border facility. "This was about shining a light on what's going on."
In less than two months, the number of migrants sent to Ciudad Juárez under the program has swelled from 2,800 to 7,600. Human rights groups and a former Mexican government official say migrants aren't safe in the border city.
The Homeland Security Department's Office of Inspector General visited five Border Patrol facilities in South Texas last month and found "dangerous overcrowding and prolonged detention of children and adults."
The Texas Tribune visited a migrant shelter in Reynosa, Mexico, to investigate another aspect of the ongoing border crisis: migrants from around the world crowding into Mexican border towns as they wait for a chance to claim asylum in the U.S.
Last summer, public attention and outrage prompted the Trump administration to back off its zero-tolerance immigration policy. Attention waned, but the federal government's ineffective border policies have drawn the public eye once again.