U.S. To Put Security Cameras On Border; Agents Skeptical


The U.S. Homeland Security Department is preparing to have hundreds of new camera towers installed along the border with Mexico as part of a multiyear effort to slow illegal migration, says USA Today. Secretary Michael Chertoff plans to announce today that the government will pay private contractors tens of millions of dollars to set up high-tech towers to hold cameras and sensors that will help Border Patrol agents catch people crossing illegally. Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, asked, “Is this the right plan? Is it going to work? Obviously the jury’s out.”

T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council, which represents border agents, is skeptical. “They’re applying the wrong solution to the problem,” said Bonner, adding that Congress needs to pass legislation to “stop the employment magnet.” He said there still aren’t enough agents and more cameras won’t change that. “None of this technology catches people,” he said. “The cameras don’t swoop down off the towers and grab people by the ankles until Border Patrol agents show up.’

Link: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-09-20-border-cameras_x.htm

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