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DHS Directs FEMA To Help With Migrant Children Amid Record Backlogs



  • The Biden administration has deployed FEMA to help shelter and transfer migrant children at the southern border as record numbers of unaccompanied minors continue to enter the country.
  • As of Sunday, U.S. Border Patrol was holding more than 4,200 children in detention centers, jail cells, and other crowded holding facilities usually meant for adults, according to government records reviewed by reporters.
  • The surge of young migrants has quickly become a politicized flashpoint in the early days of the Biden administration.
  • Republicans claimed Biden’s efforts to rollback Trump-era policies are responsible for the surge, but Democrats have said the crisis is simply a result of Trump’s failed actions on immigration. 

FEMA to Aid With Migrant Crisis

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced Saturday that it was deploying the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which is known for responding to natural disasters, to help “receive, shelter, and transfer” unaccompanied migrant children at the southwest border.

The move is part of a 90-day effort by President Joe Biden’s administration to process the rapidly growing amount of children and teens trying to enter the country in record numbers after he rolled back several immigration policies imposed by former President Donald Trump.

Biden has maintained the Trump-era rule enacted last March that allows the U.S. to expel almost all migrants on the grounds of preventing further spread of COVID-19. However, he has also issued narrow carve-outs for children and asylum seekers who would otherwise be sent to Mexico while awaiting their trials.

The result has been a massive influx of child and teen migrants that the federal government does not have the capacity to accommodate. According to recent reports, about 8,500 teens and children are living in shelters run by Health and Human Services (HHS) — the department tasked with eventually placing them with sponsors.

However, because the agency has been unable to quickly add the capacity it needs to hold the overwhelming number of child-migrants, thousands of kids have instead been packed into detention centers, jail cells, and other holding facilities meant for adults that pose large COVID risks and are unsafe for minors.

Record Influx of Children Migrants

As of Sunday, U.S. Border Patrol was holding more than 4,200 unaccompanied children in those short-term facilities, according to government records reviewed by several outlets.

Nearly 3,000 of the children in Customs and Border Protection (CBP) custody had been held longer than 72 hours — the timeframe for which agency is legally required to transfer most unaccompanied minnows to the HHS agency tasked with resettlement.

The unprecedented surge represents a recent upward trend. The number of children in CBP custody increased by 31% increase from early last week, and the number of kids held longer than 72 hours has more than doubled in the same time.

Unsurprisingly, the situation has quickly become a highly politicized one for Biden in the first weeks and months of his presidency. Republicans have blamed the influx of migrant children on Biden’s policies, with many arguing that he has incentivized parents to risk their children’s safety to send them to the U.S. with the aim of joining them later. 

Many Democrats, however, have argued that Biden just inherited the border crisis from Trump, and that the flow of migrants to the border is the result of failed policies under the last administration. 

Still, other more progressive Democrats, like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), have condemned the Biden administration for reopening facilities to hold migrant children, arguing it just allows them to hold more minors, rather than focus on resettling them.

See what others are saying: (The Washington Post) (CBS News) (NPR)


White Supremacist Propaganda Reached Record High in 2022, ADL Finds



 “We cannot sit idly by as these extremists pollute our communities with their hateful trash,” ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said.

White supremacist propaganda in the U.S. reached record levels in 2022, according to a report published Wednesday by the Anti-Defamation League’s Center of Extremism.

The ADL found over 6,700 cases of white supremacist propaganda in 2022, which marks a 38% jump from the nearly 4,900 cases the group found in 2021. It also represents the highest number of incidents ever recorded by the ADL. 

The propaganda tallied by the anti-hate organization includes the distribution of racist, antisemitic, and homophobic flyers, banners, graffiti, and more. This propaganda has spread substantially since 2018, when the ADL found just over 1,200 incidents. 

“There’s no question that white supremacists and antisemites are trying to terrorize and harass Americans with their propaganda,” ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said in a statement. “We cannot sit idly by as these extremists pollute our communities with their hateful trash.” 

The report found that there were at least 50 white supremacist groups behind the spread of propaganda in 2022, but 93% of it came from just three groups. One of those groups was also responsible for 43% of the white supremacist events that took place last year. 

White supremacist events saw a startling uptick of their own, with the ADL documenting at least 167, a 55% jump from 2021. 

Propaganda was found in every U.S. state except for Hawaii, and events were documented in 33 states, most heavily in Massachusetts, California, Ohio, and Florida.

“The sheer volume of white supremacist propaganda distributions we are documenting around the country is alarming and dangerous,” Oren Segal, Vice President of the ADL’s Center on Extremism said in a statement. “Hardly a day goes by without communities being targeted by these coordinated, hateful actions, which are designed to sow anxiety and create fear.”

“We need a whole-of-society approach to combat this activity, including elected officials, community leaders, and people of good faith coming together and condemning this activity forcefully,” Segal continued. 

See what others are saying: (Axios) (The Hill) (The New York Times)

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Adidas Financial Woes Continue, Company on Track for First Annual Loss in Decades



Adidas has labeled 2023 a “transition year” for the company. 

Yeezy Surplus 

Adidas’ split with musician Kanye West has left the company with financial problems due to surplus Yeezy products, putting the sportswear giant in the position to potentially suffer its first annual loss in over 30 years. 

Adidas dropped West last year after he made a series of antisemitic remarks on social media and other broadcasts. His Yeezy line was a staple for Adidas, and the surplus product is due, in part, to the brand’s own decision to continue production during the split.

According to CEO Bjorn Gulden, Adidas continued production of only the items already in the pipeline to prevent thousands of people from losing their jobs. However, that has led to the unfortunate overabundance of Yeezy sneakers and clothes. 

On Wednesday, Gulden said that selling the shoes and donating the proceeds makes more sense than giving them away due to the Yeezy resale market — which has reportedly shot up 30% since October.

“If we sell it, I promise that the people who have been hurt by this will also get something good out of this,” Gulden said in a statement to the press. 

However, Gulden also said that West is entitled to a portion of the proceeds of the sale of Yeezys per his royalty agreement.

The Numbers 

Adidas announced in February that, following its divergence from West, it is facing potential sales losses totaling around $1.2 billion and profit losses of around $500 million. 

If it decides to not sell any more Yeezy products, Adidas is facing a projected annual loss of over $700 million.

Outside of West, Adidas has taken several heavy profit blows recently. Its operating profit reportedly fell by 66% last year, a total of more than $700 million. It also pulled out of Russia after the country’s invasion of Ukraine last year, which cost Adidas nearly $60 million dollars. Additionally, China’s “Zero Covid” lockdowns last year caused in part a 36% drop in revenue for Adidas compared to years prior.

As a step towards a solution, Gulden announced that the company is slashing its dividends from 3.30 euros to 0.70 euro cents per share pending shareholder approval. 

Adidas has labeled 2023 a “transition year” for the company. 

“Adidas has all the ingredients to be successful. But we need to put our focus back on our core: product, consumers, retail partners, and athletes,” Gulden said. “I am convinced that over time we will make Adidas shine again. But we need some time.”

See what others are saying: (The Washington Post) (The New York Times) (CNN)

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Immigration Could Be A Solution to Nursing Home Labor Shortages



98% of nursing homes in the United States are experiencing difficulty hiring staff. 

The Labor Crisis 

A recent National Bureau of Economic Research paper has offered up a solution to the nursing home labor shortage: immigration. 

According to a 2022 American Health Care Association survey, six in ten nursing homes are limiting new patients due to staffing issues. The survey also says that 87% of nursing homes have staffing shortages and 98% are experiencing difficulty hiring. 

The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) outlined in their paper that increased immigration could help solve the labor shortage in nursing homes. Immigrants make up 19% of nursing home workers.

With every 10% increase in female immigration, nursing assistant hours go up by 0.7% and registered nursing hours go up by 1.1% And with that same immigration increase, short-term hospitalizations of nursing home residents go down by 0.6%.

The Solution 

Additionally, the State Department issued 145% more EB-3 documents, which are employment-based visas, for healthcare workers in the 2022 fiscal year than in 2019, suggesting that more people are coming to the U.S. to work in health care. 

However, according to Skilled Nursing News, in August of 2022, the approval process from beginning to end for an RN can take between seven to nine months. 

Displeasure about immigration has exploded since Pres. Joe Biden took office in 2021. According to a Gallup study published in February, around 40% of American adults want to see immigration decrease. That is a steep jump from 19% in 2021, and it is the highest the figure has been since 2016.

However, more than half of Democrats still are satisfied with immigration and want to see it increased. But with a divided Congress, the likelihood of any substantial immigration change happening is pretty slim. 

See what others are saying: (Axios) (KHN) (Skilled Nursing News)

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