Reynaldo Leaños Jr., NPR, May 1, 2020
Nayda Alvarez and her family were hunkered down in their South Texas home a couple weeks ago when her dad saw a caravan of vehicles coming their way.
Alvarez suspected they were government workers but didn’t want to get close enough to find out, so she took a photo and sent it to her attorneys. Turns out, they were government surveyors collecting data for upcoming border wall construction.
“They were in there with several big trucks, some sort of machinery,” Alvarez said. “I felt insecure knowing that there were people next to us. I don’t know who these people are, where they’ve been or what they have.”
While much of the country has been on lockdown because of the coronavirus, construction of President Trump’s border wall has continued.
Democrats on Capitol Hill have called for a full-stop on construction. But the administration has accelerated some efforts to build the wall, and Trump is using the pandemic to justify his push for it.
Since the pandemic began in the U.S., federal officials have moved to speed up construction of 200 miles of border wall by waiving federal regulations. And they are still filing lawsuits in south Texas to seize private land for the wall.
Customs and Border Protection said in a statement that the pandemic shows it’s important to, “have full awareness of who and what is coming across our borders.”