By Jennie Taer
- Migrants bused to Washington, D.C. by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott told the Daily Caller News Foundation that they don’t plan to stay in the nation’s capital.
- “We were gonna go to New York, but the person is not responding to us, so now we want to go to Florida. We’re seeing if people can help us because there are people that will receive us in Florida and give us work in order to get settled,” one migrant told the DCNF.
- Around three dozen migrants from Cuba, Venezuela, and Angola departed two buses that arrived Wednesday morning.
Washington, D.C. — Roughly 40 migrants arrived in Washington Wednesday morning on buses chartered from Texas as part of Gov. Greg Abbott’s effort to bring migrants to the nation’s capital, and each of them told the Daily Caller News Foundation that they had no plans to stay.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott pledged to bus migrants to Washington on April 6 after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) announced that Title 42, the policy used to quickly expel certain migrants during the COVID-19 pandemic, will end May 23. However, the migrants on the bus Wednesday told the DCNF they were heading to Florida, Maine, New York, and Kentucky.
One group of men from Cuba and Venezuela said they were going to Florida, and one of them told the DCNF he was going to Miami.
“We were gonna go to New York, but the person is not responding to us, so now we want to go to Florida. We’re seeing if people can help us because there are people that will receive us in Florida and give us work in order to get settled,” one man from the group told the DCNF.
“They treated me badly in Mexico. The police hit me and cut me here. I’ve also got bruises from them,” a migrant from Venezuela said, showing the DCNF the bruises down his body and a gash under his eye.
“Thank God I could get away from them and that I’m here in the United States to move forward. I will try to accomplish my dream and be with my family. I will work to move forward for them,” he added.
A mother from Cuba was traveling with her 9-year-old son, who didn’t have shoes, and said her family was going to Kentucky.
Raising his arms in excitement, one man from Venezuela said he was going to New York.
A group of about 7 migrants from Angola said they were going to Portland, Maine. Some of them were wearing a mix of cold and warm weather clothes, while one woman had on shorts and a coat.
The group was traveling with young children, including one 8 month old baby, tw0 8 year olds, and one 6 year old.
The migrants that arrived Wednesday morning were escorted by Catholic Charities USA, a nongovernmental faith-based organization, to a local coffee shop, the DCNF observed. The organization helped them facilitate travel to their final destinations, a volunteer told the DCNF.
Some migrants are able to depart the buses before arriving in Washington as the bus stops to refuel and change drivers in other areas of the country, according to Val Verde Border Humanitarian Coalition Director Tiffany Burrow, who previously spoke to the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Burrow recently took the bus with migrants to see how they were supported when they got to Washington Burrow’s organization is located in Del Rio, Texas, a small border town that is expecting to be overwhelmed when Title 42 ends, and she’s concerned how that could affect the resources in Washington.
“There is an amazing team here in D.C. that is receiving. It’s multiple organizations. Their dedication is phenomenal. I am so impressed how they’re able to pull together different resources here, but I’m concerned that the increase at the border and potentially on those D.C. buses goes way beyond what you’re seeing right now,” Burrow told the DCNF shortly after she departed the bus.
“I think those numbers will increase, and, I think as the numbers increase, there’s gonna be more of a demographic that’s going to the northeast and then more folks that are coming through D.C. to get to those locations, It’s gonna be a challenge on this end,” she added.
The agency charged with carrying out the busing effort, the Texas Department of Emergency Management (TDEM), didn’t respond to a request for comment.