SAN DIEGO – A California politician and several celebrities crossed the border to Tijuana Tueasday in an effort to shed light on the struggles of LGBTQ migrants at the border.
Assemblyman Todd Gloria was part of the delegation. Tuesday afternoon he crossed back into San Diego at San Ysidro and spoke with reporters. He said they saw quite a few members of the LGBTQ community waiting in Mexico for a chance to request asylum in the US.
“I think it’s important to shine a light on what’s going on just a few steps from San Diego,” Gloria said. “It was particularly heartbreaking to hear what many are encountering at home -- the housing shortages, the violence. It’s understandable why they would want to flee.”
Gloria was joined on the tour by former NBA player Jason Collins. Collins was the first basketball player to come out as gau while still playing in the league. Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent, both well known interior designers, and social media stars in the LGBTQ community also joined the tour.
"They are giving their time to come down here and spread the word," Gloria said. "I think that is really important."
Gloria said many of the migrants are coming from Central America. He said there has been an increase in the number of transgender people traveling north in search of asylum. He said recent changes to US asylum policies have forced many asylum seekers to remain in Mexico, leading to overcrowding in shelters south of the border.
Gloria praised California Governor, Gavin Newsom for allocating $2 million to help the migrants.
“He gets it, and he’s providing the assistance that we should be grateful for," Gloria said. "I shudder to think where we would be without it.”