Sen. Lisa Murkowski voted, along with nearly the entire Senate Appropriations Committee, to provide $4.6 billion in supplemental funding for the crisis at the southern U.S. border.

In a statement dated Wednesday, Murkowski's office says the bill addresses the growing number of migrants arriving at the border. The funding will go toward supporting immigration judge teams, medical care, clothing and essential needs for migrants.

The funding will also provide safety and welfare needs of migrant children in custody of U.S. Health and Human Services, including requirements ensuring shelters align with child welfare standards.

"The overwhelming influx of families and children coming into America presents incredible challenges to our operations and facilities and places both asylum applicants and Border Patrol Agents at serious risk," Murkowski said. "It’s our duty to provide border security professionals that are serving on the front lines with the support they need and to ensure that those seeking refuge in our nation are treated humanely.”

An appropriation of $144.8 million is also included in the bill to support military operations at the southwest border.

Supplemental funding for U.S. southern border

From the office of Sen. Lisa Murkowski

JUSTICE

Provides support for the hiring of 30 additional Immigration Judge Teams (attorneys, law clerks, paralegals, courtroom administrators, and other support staff), which includes for the purchase or lease of immigration judge courtroom space and equipment. Also allocates additional funding for expenses related to detainees in the custody of the U.S. Marshals, such as housing, transportation, and care.

DEFENSE

Provides operation and maintenance support to the Army, Marine Corps, Air Force and Army National Guard, for expenses to respond to the significant rise in unaccompanied minors and family unit undocumented individuals at the southwest border, including medical assistance, command and control, and mobile surveillance.

CARE –Food, Shelter, Medical, and Transportation

Provides support to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for establishing and operating migrant care and processing facilities, such as medical care and transportation for medical needs and court proceedings. Additional support is provided for FEMA’s energy food and shelter program, including to reimburse states, local governments, and non-governmental organizations for care of homeless migrants.

UNACCOMPANIED CHILDREN

To address the significant rise in unaccompanied minors and ensure the safety and welfare of children in custody, the bill provides additional support for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC) program, allowing the agency to expand its shelter capacity.

 

The funding package passed the Senate Appropriations Committee with a 30-1 vote and will now be sent to the full U.S. Senate for final approval.

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