Trump’s Census memo could impact 115,000 ‘unauthorized’ immigrants in RGV 

When President Trump signed a memorandum excluding “illegal aliens” from the 2020 Census count on Tuesday, it potentially excluded an estimated 115,000 people from...

CBP confirms firings, suspensions over Facebook posts

After a more than year-long investigation into derogatory social media posts from some of its personnel, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials fired four, and suspended more than 35 officers as a result. "U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) addresses misconduct that violates our Standards of Conduct and is contrary to our core values of vigilance, service to country, and integrity,” the official statement from CBP confirming the firings and suspension states. “(Four) employees were removed from service, 38 employees were suspended without pay, and the remaining were disciplined with reprimands or counseling.” Read the full story at

Riverbank eroding at site of private border wall

Just months after a private developer constructed a 3-mile long stretch of steel bollard fencing along the Rio Grande south of Mission, opponents of...

Supreme Court allows enforcement of new green card rule

WASHINGTON — A divided Supreme Court on Monday allowed the Trump administration to put in place new rules that could jeopardize permanent resident status...

Witnesses: Mexican immigration officials destroy migrant camps

In Matamoros, a dirt path along the Rio Grande once lined with tents occupied by asylum seekers was scattered with dirty clothing, toiletries, food,...

Donna man convicted of smuggling Chinese nationals

A Donna man has been convicted by a federal jury for an arrest dating back to 2018, when he was found transporting several Chinese nationals who did not have documentation to be in the United States, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office news release. Federico Espinosa-Flores, 49, was arrested at the U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint in Sarita on Dec. 21, 2018. He was charged with knowingly and intentionally conspiring to unlawfully transport undocumented immigrants. The trial lasted two days.

McAllen applies for migrant aid reimbursement

This week, 71 immigrants seeking asylum in the United States arrived at the migrant relief center in downtown McAllen. It was a slow week. Earlier this year, and over the last five years, federal authorities dropped off hundreds of — and at times over a thousand — migrants in McAllen in a single day. Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley, with contributions from the City of McAllen, has aided the migrants. This year was perhaps the busiest, during the winter when the authorities released mass groups of migrants into border cities. Read more at the

Once again, CBP maps put Santa Ana in path of wall construction

Maps released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection appear to show construction near Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, which was spared in the border security deal negotiated earlier this year. In February 2018, a contract worth up to $100 million was published, soliciting vendors to bid on a project that included the construction of 3 miles of wall in Alamo, where the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge is located, as well as the “installation of fiber-optic cable, lighting systems and construction of an all-weather patrol road and enforcement zone,” the notice stated. Despite plans to have that contract awarded in May 2018, and after several protests from the Rio Grande Valley community, who opposed construction and did not want to see the refuge damaged and seemingly close down, Santa Ana was spared during omnibus bill negotiations, essentially saving it from border wall construction. Read the full story on

Comedians volunteer at migrant shelters, learn about border

One tender moment between a young migrant girl and comedians volunteering at the Humanitarian Respite Center in McAllen lingers in the thoughts of one television producer while sitting in the comfort of his home in Brooklyn, New York. Colin Jakubczyk joined a group mostly composed of people who devote their lives to making people laugh, spent 10 days in the Rio Grande Valley — a region under a national spotlight because of intense debate over President Donald Trump’s polarizing immigration policies. “And they just made so, so many kids laugh. I saw one pair of us that, after braiding a girl’s hair, showed a video on their phone of a motorcycle and proceeded to steer her braids like handlebars as she giggled endlessly,” Jakubczk said. “One of the things that worries me the most about this crisis is how much of a permanent psychological effect it is going to have on the children that are forced to endure it. “Having a moment of laughter after such trauma was deeply needed and appreciated by these kids.” They came from New York City, Los Angeles, Utah and Atlanta to McAllen over a 10-day period this month after raising $15,000 used to support the respite center and Team Brownsville. Read the full story at