SOUTH TEXAS (KRLD) — Officials say that nearly a thousand illegal immigrants a day are crossing into Texas from Mexico, an anomaly that is now being compared to Hurricane Katrina.
“How do you prepare for that?” says Don Ray, the Executive Director of the Texas Border Sheriffs Coalition. “You can’t have an influx of people like that without having an impact; I think we saw that after Katrina. It’s relocation services that are really taking place. In the case of Katrina, most of them were United States citizens or people that were here lawfully, and now you have people that aren’t here lawfully.”READ MORE: Voter Registration Deadline For Texas' March Primary Fast Approaching
Ray says that with that sort of influx of people crossing illegally into Texas from various parts of Mexico and Central America, there are public health concerns. “You have that many people in one place — you have the potential for illnesses that could spread that could have an impact on the local community.”
It’s a concern that’s shared in Nogales, Arizona, where most of the illegal immigrants captured in Texas are being shipped to temporary housing and processing facilities.
“When you put 1,000 or 1,500 people in just some little facility and they just came from another country, you never know what they’re bringing into the country,” says Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.