Officials facing challenges keeping families together during Brownsville migrant wave

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As more migrants arrive to Brownsville, more of them have a reason to wait downtown. They’ve been separated from friends and family during the detention process. 

For some, like Joanna Vivene, it’s very emotional.

Vivene, a mother of two children who are 18 and 21, said the three of them were separated on Tuesday after they crossed the border.

“I haven't eaten anything, thinking they haven't eaten either,” Vivene said, adding that she's relieved to see them get off the bus.

Others are waiting to see their spouses. Some who cross are being deported, others are not.

“I'm worried they'll send her back to a further Mexican border city with more danger and more risk,” Jorge Millano said of his wife.

The migrants who are still waiting go to a kitchen run By Good Neighbor Settlement House to get breakfast.

The majority of the people being apprehended and released are currently from Venezuela.

More migrants are also being spotted coming across the border at the Brownsville Memorial Golf Course.

As many as 2,500 migrants are coming in per day, according to Border Patrol.

The ones who are released are free to walk around.

Edward Landaeta said he spent three months waiting in Matamoros for a legal way to cross.

“We don't have anything to live off of over there,” Landeata said, adding he didn't want to spend more than a day in Matamoros with his kids.

Migrants are saying that the CBP One app isn't loading or accepting their applications. Recent clashes between criminal groups across the border are also causing migrants to flee.

Now on the U.S. side, people are finding a place to sleep, and something to eat.

The city of Brownsville said the migrants are using their own money — or money from sponsors or relatives — to book hotel rooms in the city to stay in.


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