Media Contact

Stephen Wilson, ACLU of Texas, 713-870-4107,

September 4, 2019

EL PASO, Texas — The ACLU Border Rights Center today sent a letter to U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Office of Field Operations demanding an investigation into two closures at El Paso ports of entry last month. The letter states that CBP officers have more frequently closed ports of entry at the border while asylum seekers wait to have their claims processed.

Cynthia Pompa, advocacy manager for the ACLU Border Rights Center, had the following statement:

“Closing ports of entry, without justification, significantly disrupts the lives of people living in Texas’ border communities. CBP’s callous actions are sending a message of fear and xenophobia to the rest of the country — and it will not go unnoticed. Shutting down any port of entry is disruptive, cruel, and unnecessary, particularly when they are closed with aggressive displays of militarism absent any legitimate security threat. CBP officials continue to ignore the humanitarian consequences of rejecting asylum seekers, opting to close ports instead of following the law and process arriving families.”