U.S. Congressman Michael C. Burgess (R-TX), Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health, recently introduced a resolution to redirect American foreign assistance provided to El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras away from the central governments of those countries to target the entities working to address the drivers of illegal immigration from these countries to the United States, according to a news release from Burgess’ office.
In 2018, 30 percent of the people apprehended at the border began their journeys in El Salvador, Guatemala or Honduras, according to the news release. The amount redirected from the central governments of these countries to non-governmental, nonprofit and other entities will equal the amount of unaccompanied children from each country in Office of Refugee Resettlement custody multiplied by $15,000.
“All Americans can agree that a lack of border security endangers our country,” Burgess said in a prepared statement. “As Congress considers solutions for our nation’s immigration crisis, we must consider why families are willing to embark on a dangerous journey to reach our southern border. This summer, I visited El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to learn firsthand about the immigration, humanitarian, and energy challenges in this region. Unfortunately, each of these countries has a cycle of gang violence, poverty and corruption that leads to irregular migration.”
The news release says Burgess, who represents Denton County and parts of Tarrant and Collin counties, “is committed to finding permanent solutions to end the cycle of irregular migration and restore order on America’s southern border.”
“My resolution, H.Res. 1092, expresses the sense of the House that foreign assistance provided to these nations should be targeted to the community-building entities working to address the drivers of illegal immigration,” Burgess said in the statement. “America’s foreign assistance funds are much better spent helping to provide a safe home for children in Central American countries than spent caring for these children in taxpayer-funded shelters once they reach our borders. While not a perfect solution, this is yet another step toward securing American borders.”