President Joe Biden’s Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has sent a letter to government agencies begging for volunteers to help border officials with the growing number of unaccompanied children crossing the nation’s southern border.
“We are actively working to screen, process and deploy these volunteers while continuing our recruitment efforts and exploration of other avenues to bolster staff resources at the border,” an OPM spokesperson said.
Kathleen McGettigan, acting director of OPM, said the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) needs federal government civilian employees for deployment of up to 120 days at facilities for unaccompanied children.
The locations include Dallas, San Diego, San Antonio and Fort Bliss. Future locations will likely be added, according to the memo.
More than 16,000 unaccompanied children were reported in government custody as of last week. More than 5,000 are housed in Customs and Border Protection facilities.
More than 100,000 illegal immigrants crossed the nation’s southern border in February. The spike in border crossings has led to a new strain on the immigration system.
The surge in immigration has been largely attributed to President Joe Biden’s policy changes. He signed an executive order to end most deportations for 100 days on his first day in office.
Both Republican and Democrat leaders have criticized the president’s policies. Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX) recently leaked photos from a Donna, Texas, camp to increase transparency of the situation.
These immigrant children need help beyond what government can supply. Volunteers are a great step, but better policies could prevent this problem altogether.