Despite the substantial amount of money, American taxpayers spend on illegal immigrants in the United States, the Biden administration continues to allocate tens of millions of dollars in humanitarian funding to Central American nations. So, the goal is to improve living conditions in these countries, with the hope that it will discourage their citizens from illegally migrating to the U.S.
The costly and unsuccessful effort was spearheaded by Vice President Kamala Harris. The administration believes that by enhancing conditions in these impoverished nations, individuals will no longer feel compelled to leave their homes, thereby offering hope and opportunities for the people of Central America to build secure and prosperous futures within their communities.
Since spring 2021, the vice president’s Central American project has received approximately $300 million. However, government data reveals that this funding has had minimal impact on reducing illegal immigration from the northern triangle. In fiscal year 2022, a record-breaking 2.4 million illegal aliens entered the United States through Mexico, surpassing the already high number of 1.73 million in 2021. More than half a million of these migrants originated from the northern triangle, highlighting the ineffectiveness of Biden’s multimillion-dollar plan. Among them were 228,000 Guatemalans, 199,000 Hondurans, and 93,000 Salvadorans.
Notably, many of these individuals were not the most upstanding citizens. Border Patrol agents apprehended numerous gang members, primarily affiliated with the notoriously violent Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) gang, originating from Salvadoran immigrants. Additionally, dozens of individuals on the national terrorist watchlist were intercepted.
Despite the clear ineffectiveness of the funds, American aid continues to flow south. The United States provided life-saving assistance to the residents of the region just a few months ago. These funds were intended to support programs that address food insecurity, gender-based violence, and protection for vulnerable individuals and help restore livelihoods and provide safe drinking water for impoverished families.
The Biden administration emphasizes in its announcement that the Central American nations face significant challenges, such as natural disasters, large-scale displacements, rising food prices, and chronic protection issues. It assures that the United States remains committed to delivering life-saving aid to assist the people of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
Recently, the government announced an additional $60 million to combat the root causes of irregular migration from Central America. A breakdown of the funding includes over $10.5 million allocated to Guatemala for addressing the social, economic, justice, and security aspects of GBV. Honduras will receive $10 million dedicated to strengthening interventions that prevent GBV and increase the likelihood of breaking cycles of violence. Furthermore, more than $5 million will support the growth of small-scale commercial farming to boost employment opportunities in the region, and $1.3 million will be disbursed to local organizations supporting regional HIV care and treatment programs.
The U.S. government claims that this strategy targeting the root causes aims to create economic opportunities that foster safety, dignity, democratic participation, confidence in public institutions, and the ability to build a future for oneself and one’s family at home. While this argument may seem compelling, it is evident that the current approach is not producing the desired results.