WASHINGTON, Aug. 28 (Reuters / EP) –
The Administration of the president of the United States, Donald Trump, has changed 271 million dollars destined to disasters and cybersecurity to pay the facilities related to immigration, as reported on Tuesday by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and an important Democrat of the Congress.
The money, which also went to the United States Coast Guard, will be used to pay detention centers and courts for migrants arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border.
The Trump Administration is trying to bypass Congress to transfer money originally designated for other programs. This will allow the Government to continue housing migrants who arrive at the border, part of the president's promise not to allow them to wait for trials outside custody.
The Administration plans to use $ 115 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster relief fund just as hurricane season reaches the Atlantic Ocean, according to a letter from Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, who chairs the panel of Congress overseeing DHS.
DHS noted that Congress did not provide sufficient funds for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Service (ICE) to detain adults while they wait for an immigration judge to hear their cases.
Congress allocated $ 2.8 billion to pay 52,000 beds this year, but ICE currently holds more than 55,000 migrants, a record number, according to agency statistics.
“Once again, DHS has ignored the agreement negotiated with the COngreso by greatly exceeding the amount allocated for immigration expulsion and enforcement operations,” said Roybal-Allard.
The president of the House of Representatives, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, has urged the Trump Administration to reconsider the change in funds.
“Stealing appropriate funds is always unacceptable, but choosing disaster relief funds to fund a terrible and inhuman family incarceration plan is amazing, and doing so on the eve of hurricane season is incredibly reckless,” Pelosi said in a statement.
FEMA spokeswoman Lizzie Litzow has said the reduction in funds will not affect the preparation efforts or other functions for which the money was allocated.
Trump has turned the repression of legal and illegal immigration into a hallmark of his presidency after campaigning in 2016 with the promise, so far unfulfilled, that Mexico would pay a border wall to prevent migrants from entering the United States.