On November 19, 2016, the United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it opened the Tornillo-Guadalupe, Texas, Temporary Holding Facility [link]. The CBP opened this new temporary holding facility in response to the recent upsurge in illegal crossings along the Southwest border [see blog]. The temporary holding facility, located 40 miles east of El Paso, Texas, can hold up to 500 individuals. The CBP explains that the new facility will be open for 30 days, “pending any changes in the volume of people arriving at the ports [of entry] or crossing the border between the ports in the El Paso area until they are transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).”
The CBP explains that the temporary holding facility “will offer overflow processing support to the CBP's ports of entry and Border Patrol stations in the El Paso area.” The CBP will use the temporary facility to process Unaccompanied Alien Children and Family Units. Individuals processed at this facility will be transferred to the ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) after processing.
The El Paso Sector Chief Jeffrey Shelf advised individuals to not risk their lives endeavoring to cross the Southwest border illegally. “Smugglers are not your friends. Don't put your lives in their hands.”