SAN DIEGO — Several mayors in San Diego County are bracing for the end of Title 42 while stressing the importance of getting more resources from the federal government.
Mayors in San Diego, El Cajon and National City have shared concerns about food, safety, space, and beds to house migrants.
Mayors have told FOX 5 their resources are already limited and could be spread thin if there is a significant amount of migrants arriving to their cities. The mayors have also said they are not getting much communication from the federal government on what to expect once the policy is lifted.
“And so we don’t really know what the scope of the problem is going to look like. So we are going to have to wait and see until it happens,” El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells said.
Wells said he worries about enough beds, food and stress on the city and its police and fire departments. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection told his staff El Cajon could see up to 400 migrants a day.
“I think these people are going to come across the border and they’ve have been through hell and they are going to have no place to sleep. If they don’t have any place to sleep or eat, we got to figure out a way to help them,” Wells said.
In response, Wells sent a letter to President Joe Biden, Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy and local congresswoman Sara Jacobs asking for more resources.
“I think it’s reasonable to ask the federal government to mitigate that problem by giving FEMA support, some financial support. People can come in and provide medical attention, and psychiatric help,” Wells said.
There are similar concerns felt in San Diego by Mayor Todd Gloria.
“The City will continue to support the County, which is developing a plan to address impacts on our communities. I have met directly with Customs and Border Protection in Washington D.C. and in San Diego to articulate the City’s concern that we simply don’t have the resources to address an influx of migrants and need significant support to address the looming crisis at the Southwestern border. Ultimately, the only real solution is for Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform that constructively addresses this issue and ends this cycle of crises that have a profound impact on American cities,” Gloria said in a statement.
It’s a slightly different story in National City.
“We are not really anticipating anything major at this stage of the game,” National City Mayor Ron Morrisson said.
According to the Morrisson, the city has nonprofit organizations that can help and have helped in the past with large border crossings.
“We have all our normal stuff in place, to deal with a lot of different immigration issues. We think we have enough flexibility we should be able to handle anything within reason, as it is right now,” Morrisson explained.
Mayors said migrants can expect to be treated humanely when they arrive in their cities.
“We’ve always been a giving city. We will do whatever we can to help people out no matter what the circumstance,” Morrisson said.
“We are not going to discriminate with people…it’s not their fault, they are escaping prosecution,” Wells added.