HomePoliticsLawmakers will highlight humanitarian crisis in border 'colonias', in South Texas hearing

Lawmakers will highlight humanitarian crisis in border ‘colonias’, in South Texas hearing


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A congressional committee will hold the first field hearing Friday of the current Congress on the southern border, highlighting a humanitarian crisis on the US side of the border.

The Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Equity in Growth, chaired by Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., will tour “colonias” near McAllen, Texas, in the district of committee member Rep. Vicente Gonzalez, D-Texas .

Rep. Jim Himes, R-Conn., chairman of the Select Committee on Economic Disparity & Fairness in Growth, speaks at a hearing. The select committee is touring impoverished “colonias” near the southern border on Friday.
(House Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Equity in Growth)

Colonias are impoverished neighborhoods or settlements, often lacking running water, sewage treatment, or other basic infrastructure needs. They are very common in Texas, mainly near the Mexican border. While some residents of these settlements are not US citizens, according to pew Charitable Trusts, a large number are, or are documented in some way.

“We are showing places where American citizens live in the United States of America in third world conditions,” González told Fox News Digital. “If you look at the median family income, it’s less than $15,000 a year. And it’s tragic, and I’m proud to bring members here to see for themselves, so when we get back to Washington we can make decisions that work for everyone.” Americans”. .”

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Rep. Vicente González, D-Texas, represents a district in South Texas that borders Mexico and is home to many poor "Suburb" communities The House Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Equity in Growth will hold a field hearing on those colonias on Friday.

Rep. Vicente Gonzalez, a Democrat from Texas, represents a South Texas district that borders Mexico and is home to many impoverished “colonia” communities. The House Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Equity in Growth will hold a field hearing on those colonias on Friday.
(Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Equity in Growth)

The committee hearing will focus on how to improve infrastructure in unincorporated colonias.

Members will meet with colonia residents and local officials as it seeks to find “outstanding practical approaches, from the federal to the local level, to improve roads, improve drainage infrastructure, and expand broadband access.” “.

The border visit comes as US officials grapple with immigrants crossing the southern border in record numbers, often fleeing poverty and poor humanitarian conditions abroad. However, Himes told Fox News Digital that conditions in the colonias, which are essentially disconnected from the modern world, show that you don’t have to look beyond our borders to find extreme poverty.

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“These colonias are somewhat defined by the fact that they’re literally not connected to infrastructure. You know, a lot of them don’t have running water, let alone broadband,” Himes said.

“We are a very rich country and the pockets of poverty that we have,” he also said, “that catches our attention.”

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Meanwhile, some GOP caucus members, including Reps. Byron Donalds, R-Fla., Kat Cammack, R-Fla., and Stephanie Bice, R-Okla., will also tour the border near the Rio Grande River with the Department of Foreign Affairs. Texas Publics. Security (DPS).

On a visit to the border Thursday night, those three Republicans witnessed the arrest of several immigrants, including a girl who had been to the United States before and was fluent in English.

Republicans are highlighting the massive surge of immigrants at the border, including nearly 240,000 encounters by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in May, which they allege is the fault of President Joe Biden.

Both federal and state law enforcement agencies are sending reinforcements to the southern border as CBP border encounters nearly reach 240,000 in May.

Both federal and state law enforcement agencies are sending reinforcements to the southern border as CBP border encounters nearly reach 240,000 in May.
(Eddie Seal/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

They often warn of the dangers of human trafficking, drugs and international criminal organizations entering the US Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Equity in Growth Ranking Member Brian Steil, R-Wisconsin, tweeted on Thursday that he will “talk about fentanyl” at his visit on Friday.

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In addition to stretching federal resources, the record number of border crossings is also affecting state law enforcement. Hotels near McAllen are packed with large numbers of Texas law enforcement officers participating in Operation Lone Star on the orders of Governor Greg Abbott.

Among the agencies participating in that operation for Texas are the Texas Game Warden, the Texas National Guard and more.



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