Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Los Angeles Welcomes 42 Migrants Bussed from Texas

Miguel Ángel had been detained in an immigration center since January. When he was released from the center in late April, he said he was moved around various Arizona and Central California cities before getting a bus ticket for L.A.

“Getting here was a surprise. I thought I would have been deported,” said Miguel Ángel, who is living in a shelter downtown and whom The Times is identifying only by his first name because of his undocumented status. “I just got here … and I already found a job, so I’m happy. I already cashed my check and sent a part to my family.”

On Wednesday, a bus of 42 migrants sent from Texas arrived in downtown Los Angeles. Those abroad were from Venezuela, Honduras, China, and Guatemala– Ángel’s home country.

Ángel said he struggled to understand why the 42 migrants were bused to L.A. However, he said he was glad other migrants had made their way to the city, which recently advanced a “sanctuary city” ordinance.

“It’s important that other people can have opportunities and stay here,” Ángel said. “Back in our country, the situation is very precarious. Everyone knows it. People even die while coming here.”

Since last year, Abbott and Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida have bused or flown thousands of migrants to liberal cities nationwide. Republican officials say the failures of Biden administration border policies necessitated the action. However, democrats and activists say they are political stunts.

Olvera Street vendor Mayra Garcia said she heard about the news of the latest bus of migrants and expressed her sympathy towards the migrants, who she said “came here for a better life.”

“All the states should be working together. I don’t know how things are in Texas, but I’ve heard there’s a lot of racism towards Hispanic people, and I think [Abbott] should have accepted part of the people there instead of just saying, ‘I’m going to wash my hands, get on the bus and let other people deal with them,’” Garcia said.

Hortencia Galván thinks that Texas and Florida are not handling their immigration crisis properly and believes undocumented workers in the city deserve the same level of attention and support from local officials.

We all need the same opportunities,” said Galván, who lives a block from the church where the migrants were received on the first night. “I work at a restaurant, and there are many people who don’t have papers. I see that many of them have spent 20 to 30 years here, and they can’t fix them.”

LA Times