The Show on KJZZ

Yuma's mayor says border cities are taking the brunt of the latest migrant surge

By Steve Goldstein
Published: Tuesday, October 26, 2021 - 12:07pm

Audio icon Download mp3 (6.3 MB)

Douglas Nicholls
Matthew Casey/KJZZ
Douglas Nicholls, mayor of Yuma.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection released data Oct. 22 indicating a massive surge in apprehensions of migrant people illegally crossing the southern border; 1.7 million individual apprehensions were made in the last fiscal year — the largest number in over 20 years.

Agency officials estimate about 1,000 migrants successfully cross the border illegally every day.

About 40% of the people arrested at the border had come from Central American countries, fleeing poverty and gang violence. A substantial number of those were families or children.

This surge is straining the resources of local governments and nonprofit agencies throughout the Southwest.

At a symposium on the border organized by Republican senators, Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls expressed concerns about the sustainability of these services if these rates continue, citing President Joe Biden’s rollback of Trump’s Migrant Protections Protocols as being the primary contributor to the stresses in Yuma.

The Show spoke with Mayor Nicholls to learn more about his concerns.

More Stories From KJZZ