WASHINGTON — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan today announced the agency’s operational update for March 2020, which included CBP’s actions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 across borders and the facilitation of essential trade and travel while continuing to secure U.S. borders through drug, gun and counterfeit seizures.
CBP has assisted HHS in implementing Title 42 of the United States Code 265 since March 21. This order prohibits the entry of certain individuals who potentially pose a significant health risk along southern and northern land borders. CBP’s actions to deter non-essential cross-border travel has resulted in passenger vehicle traffic at ports of entry being down 72% while pedestrian crossings are down 83%.
Overall, Border Patrol encounters declined 7% in March from February and March’s actions represent a 76 percent decrease since the peak of the humanitarian and border security crisis in May 2019. Additionally, 80% of the people who we are encountering since the March 21 enactment of Title 42 are being returned to the country from where they came within 2 hours.
The Border Patrol’s in-custody numbers on the Southwest border have declined by approximately 140% since March 21 – a 95% drop from the average of 3,000.
All CBP enforcement numbers for the month of March can be found here.