In the early hours of a Monday morning several weeks ago, several dozen people who came to the southern border of the U.S. as families seeking asylum arrived at the Greyhound bus station in downtown Denver.
Their trips are paid by authorities in Texas and New Mexico, where shelters have overflowed with family asylum-seekers, as U.S. Customs and Border Protection continued to see record apprehensions in April. New Mexico paid about $4,000 for the first migrant bus trip to Denver.
The buses to Denver are likely to continue. The New Mexico governor’s office said it hopes to solicit charitable contributions to pay for them. Families awaiting asylum hearings can go from there to relatives or sponsors by bus or air – if they have relatives or sponsors in the U.S. Some do not.
Three Christian congregations in Denver volunteered to provide shelter for asylum-seekers who are bused there and have nowhere else to go, the AP reported. The city of Denver had no role in arranging the trips. However, Mayor Michael Hancock said it was pleased to receive them.
It was only a week before that Denverites overwhelmingly voted to keep bans on homelessness. Denver, like many other cities, does not have enough shelter beds for its homeless population, advocates have said.
It will be interesting for us to see, if the asylum-seekers keep coming as they have been, how the people of Denver set their priorities.