The U.S. Customs & Border Protection has expanded its dropping of immigrants seeking asylum to southwest Riverside County.
Beginning earlier this month, the government agency has been placing families in and around Blythe, according to a statement on Riverside County’s website.
Between drop-offs in the southwest and east county, 257 immigrants seeking asylum have been picked up in March.
The drop-offs are beginning to take a toll on the county, which is providing support to the federal agency.
“This is a federal issue, yet the county is providing safety net services with very limited resources to these individuals and families,” said Board Chair Karen Spiegel in the statement. “We need support and intervention from the state and federal government before our local resources are overwhelmed.”
Riverside County provides humane, short-term services based on the immediate needs of each family. Without any funding path from the state or federal government, these services are funded by the county, including the motel room stays for those requiring isolation and quarantine.
Typically, an immigrant family spends “a few days” in Riverside County, according to the statement.