Staff shortages lead to long lines at US ports of entry

Southwest

WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — Weekend holiday travelers are facing long lines at several U.S. ports of entry across the southern border.

At the port of entry in Brownsville, Texas, there is a reported hour and a half wait. The city of Hidalgo, Texas is reporting a three-hour wait time. In San Luis, its an hour wait time. In Tecate, it’s a nearly two-hour wait.

Some of these wait times are similar to last year’s delays, but overall, people are waiting in their cars much longer in 2021.

One of the reasons is due to staffing shortages. Reports say there are just not enough Customs and Border Protection officers to man the booths at these ports of entry.

A nonprofit group that works to make ports of entry more efficient told NewsNation’s Kellie Meyer that CPB needs to think of a way to increase its staff. They also suggested asking Congress to invest in more officers to help reduce these wait times for travelers. 

The CBP said that these delays are entirely normal around the holidays as people visit relatives. They also say there’s been an increase in traffic since early November when the borders reopened to vaccinated nonessential travelers.

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