Taxpayers in Riverside County are now paying for a special team that is assisting people who have arrived in the City of Blythe, seeking asylum in the United States.
Border Patrol agents notified county officials on Tuesday March 2nd, that 15 people seeking asylum had been apprehended in Blythe.
County officials picked up the asylum-seekers, and brought them to the Coachella Valley.
Here they are getting Covid-19 tests, shelter, food, clothing and other resources before being transported to homes across the United States where sponsors or family members are waiting for them.
The Office of Riverside County Supervisor Manuel Perez says the county will continue to help people seeking asylum on an ongoing basis.
In fact, Perez himself was in Blythe visiting a mobile Covid-19 vaccination site, and he went to the Border Patrol station to greet the people seeking asylum.
“Riverside County quickly went to work to see how we can provide services and ensure the safety of these individuals,” said Supervisor Perez. “We have recent experience managing a well-coordinated and seamless response and providing compassionate assistance, stepping in as a safety net to fill the interim services that are needed, while making sure there is little to no impact on public safety or the community. I am proud of the county staff for once again immediately coming together for moral and humanitarian reasons.”
County departments involved in the response include Riverside County Housing, Homelessness Prevention & Workforce Solutions Department, Riverside University Health System – Behavioral Health and Public Health Departments, and the Riverside County Emergency Management Department.
The county is in contact with state and federal partners, getting additional help at taxpayer expense.
In 2019, Riverside County assisted over 2,800 migrants and families of asylum seekers traveling through the county. County staff quickly acted as first responders to receive each arrival and provide transportation to nonprofit and faith‑based organizations that filled needs for temporary shelter, meals, clothing, spiritual support and other resources.
A migrant man pushes a child in a baby stroller past a cordon of riot police as he joins a small group of migrants trying to cross the border together at the Chaparral border crossing in Tijuana, Mexico, Thursday, Nov. 22, 2018. A small group of Central American migrants marched peacefully to a border crossing in Tijuana Thursday to demand better conditions and push to enter the U.S. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)