RAICES Responds to Gov. Abbott Defense of Cruel Border Policies

Texas—In response to the Department of Justice’s lawsuit filed against the State of Texas and Governor Greg Abbott today after he refused to remove a life-threatening makeshift buoy barrier on the Rio Grande, RAICES released the following statement:

For years, we’ve been raising the alarm about Governor Abbott’s increasingly cruel border policies — and the dangerous precedents he has set for the rest of the country. It has been under Governor Abbott’s watch that people seeking safety in the U.S. have suffered an unprecedented crisis of inhumanity.

It is absurd for Governor Abbott to plead for human lives when he has systematically exploited immigrants, asylum-seekers, and refugees — and exacerbated divides by shutting down our borders to those seeking their human and legal right to asylum.

Governor Abbott’s failed Operation Lone Star is a $4.5 billion disaster marked by human rights abuses, civil rights violations, and blatant overreaches of power. In the past week alone, whistleblower reports by trooper medics have shed an even harsher light on the cruelty of the program — stepping across the line into the “inhumane.”

Governor Abbott has failed Texas countless times, and every one of his extreme tactics and policies continues to endanger the lives of our immigrant, refugee, and asylum-seeking community members.

Rather than militarizing our border, our state and federal governments must implement a humanitarian approach to immigration policy and practice immediately — and provide universal access to legal representation and social services to families and individuals exercising their human and legal right to seek asylum in the U.S.