Illegal migrants camp at U.S. airports; MA Governor Healey pleads for Washington and Congress to act on the crisis
By Belle Carter // Jan 31, 2024

America's migrant crisis has indeed reached its breaking point as various airports in the country are now being conquered by undocumented migrants. The most recent air station that has been overtaken by illegals is Terminal E at Boston's Logan International Airport.

Migrant families are reportedly sleeping on the airport floor, according to a report by WBZ-TV. A photographer captured images of approximately 100 migrants, many with young children, camped out in a corner of the terminal, sleeping on blankets.

According to the media outlet, Ed Freni, the interim CEO of the Massachusetts Port Authority which runs Logan, said the airport was "not an appropriate place" to house migrants back in November when a similar occurrence happened. However, Massachusetts hit its capacity to assist 7,500 families in its emergency shelter system, and is now putting families on a waitlist.

"The airport has been a wonderful partner and I really want to thank the folks at the airport who are doing a wonderful job including members of the state police who are working their regular shifts but who are managing the inflow and outflow of folks from the airport," Governor Maura Healey told reporters at a news conference earlier in the week.

Meanwhile, a Medford woman who has been helping out at the airport revealed that the overflow of illegals has caused hygiene problems due to limited facilities. "They don’t have access to a shower so there’s like some shower wipes, little towels just to clean up while they wait," she told the news outlet. The state police are also working on paid overtime to assist with security.

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Healey is thankful for the efforts by law enforcement but said that this is a federal issue that requires action from Washington. "We need D.C. to act. We need Congress to act," the governor pleaded. "The path is there in terms of what needs to be done to fix the border situation, to fix some of the asylum processes and to get much-needed funding to some of the interior states who have had to shoulder the burden for a problem that is geopolitical and is not the state’s making."

She also requested emergency funds from the state legislature amounting to $250 million to manage costs this year. Her administration predicted that the expenses could surge to $915 million in 2024 as more asylum seekers arrive in need of housing and care, WBZ further reported, adding that she is to submit a supplemental budget soon that may use $700 million from the state's budget surplus.

Earlier in January, parts of Chicago's O'Hare Airport were sectioned off as sleeping areas for migrants, but there were reportedly too many of them to contain, causing them to overflow into the terminal area. Moreover, San Diego International Airport suffered a similar fate around the busy Thanksgiving travel period as hundreds of migrants camped at the facility, as per a report by the New York Post.

Biden vows to "shut down" borders when overwhelmed

Still several months ahead of the elections, President Joe Biden is standing his ground in his belief that the migrant crisis is still "manageable" but recently admitted that a set of reforms are possible. He also vowed to "shut down the border" the day he signs a new proposed bill. (Related: POLL: Immigration now the leading policy concern among U.S. voters.)

The Democrat president seeking reelection in November has grappled with record numbers of migrants caught illegally crossing the U.S.-Mexico border during his presidency. Republicans contend Biden should have kept the restrictive policies of former President Donald Trump, a Republican and the frontrunner for his party's nomination in November. "What's been negotiated would – if passed into law – be the toughest and fairest set of reforms to secure the border we've ever had in our country," he said in a statement. "It would give me, as President, a new emergency authority to shut down the border when it becomes overwhelmed. And if given that authority, I would use it the day I sign the bill into law."

The White House has agreed to new limits on asylum at the border, including the creation of an expulsion power that would allow migrants who cross the southern border illegally to be rapidly returned to Mexico if migrant encounters surpassed 4,000 per day. It also provided that if encounters go over 5,000 per day, the use of the expulsion authority would become mandatory, according to the sources who requested anonymity to discuss details of the private negotiations. The United States would be required to allow at least 1,400 migrants per day to approach legal crossings to claim asylum if the expulsions were in effect, the source added.

In December 2023, encounters averaged more than 9,500 per day, according to U.S. government statistics released on Friday, Jan. 26.

Back in October, Biden asked Congress to provide the funding to secure the border. He recently followed up on this. "This includes an additional 1,300 border patrol agents, 375 immigration judges, 1,600 asylum officers and over 100 cutting-edge inspection machines to help detect and stop fentanyl at our southwest border," the president said.

Head over to to read more news related to the worsening migrant crisis in the United States.

Sources for this article include: 1 2

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