Is now, when Congo faces an Ebola epidemic, the best time to allow Congolese refugees into U.S.?

Is now, when Congo faces an Ebola epidemic, the best time to allow Congolese refugees into U.S.?
Scene in San Antonio (Image: KENS screen grab)

According to San Antonio’s CBS affiliate KENS, the Texas city has a problem. Interim Assistant City Manager Dr. Collen Bridger explained to the station that an all-out search is underway to find French-speaking volunteers able to communicate with the roughly 350 refugees from Congo who just arrived there by way of Ecuador.

But a vastly more serious problem would occur if even one of these asylum seekers — or one of the 200 to 300 more that Border Patrol has confirmed are on the way — is infected with Ebola. It’s not beyond the realm of possibility. The number of cases of infection with the deadly virus just topped 2,000, according to The Week. The World Health Organization maintains, moreover, that one in four cases may go undetected, and as with the epidemic that ran from 2014 to 2016, medical personnel in Congo are in short supply.

Add to that the current conditions at the southern border, which is currently overrun with illegal border crossers and asylum seekers, and you have the makings of a perfect pandemic.

Perhaps it means nothing, but the KENS article mentions that the original plan was to send the 350 recent arrivals on to Portland, Maine, but when Assistant City Manager Bridger reached out to Portland balked, replying, “Please don’t send us any more. We’re already stretched way beyond our capacity.”

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Adds Bridger:

So we’re working with them [the migrants] now to identify other cities throughout the United States where they can go and begin their asylum seeking process.

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles is a freelance writer and regular contributor to "Liberty Unyielding."


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