RCMP appeal to American community leaders to stop border crossings
Warm temperatures in the forecast have people living and working in Emerson bracing for another wave of asylum seekers into Manitoba this weekend.
Already this year, more than 70 people have illegally crossed into Manitoba from the United States.
The municipality of Emerson-Franklin said another eight crossed Friday morning, and more are on the way this weekend.
“My gut feeling is, we are going to have 40-50 people coming here,” said Reeve Greg Janzen.
It is the RCMP’s responsibility to ensure safety and security at the border, a distance of about 520 km in Manitoba.
The Mounties' commanding officer said Friday, people are crossing using rail lines, through bushes and open fields.
RCMP are appealing to American community leaders to stop asylum seekers from coming to Canada.
“There is a process in place to do this legally and ensure that they adhere to that process, so that's where we are looking for that support,” said Commanding Officer Scott Kolody.
Kolody said officers are studying peak crossing times and most people illegally crossing make the trek on weekends.
"Very dangerous. There's everything from barbed wire fences to drainage ditches,” he said. “We're looking at flood season coming in. These fields will be very muddy.”
Kolody said RCMP have added resources to the Emerson area since the influx and are confident officers are equipped to handle the crossings.
He said RCMP are part of an integrated enforcement team which also includes U.S. Border Patrol, the Department of Homeland Security and the Canada Border Services Agency.