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Record Northern Border Crossings: Migrants Exploit Low Staff



Clear Facts

  • Migrants have crossed the northern border from Canada into New York, Vermont, and New Hampshire in record numbers over the past year.
  • More than 12,200 migrants were caught illegally crossing the Canadian border last year, a sharp spike from the year before.
  • Low staff and lack of fencing in the region have reportedly contributed to the increase in border crossings.

Migrants have crossed the northern border from Canada into New York, Vermont, and New Hampshire in record numbers over the past year, taking advantage of low staff and lack of fencing in the region, according to the New York Post.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection data revealed that more than 12,200 migrants were caught illegally crossing the Canadian border last year, representing a sharp spike in attempted crossings from the year before, when just over 3,500 were arrested.

Chief Patrol Agent Robert Garcia wrote on X: “Since October 1, 2023, Swanton Sector Border Patrol Agents have apprehended more than 3,100 subjects from 55 countries (more than Fiscal Years 2022, 21, 20 & 19 combined). Photo: An early morning apprehension of 4 adult males from Bangladesh on February 1, near Mooers, New York.”

The Post reported that around 70% of the crossings took place along the Swanton Sector, which covers New York, Vermont, and New Hampshire. Additionally, migrants who can afford to pay for a flight from Mexico City or Cancun to Toronto or Montreal are doing so, realizing that they would be less likely to be stopped in trying to cross into the U.S.

Migrants can easily find wooded areas on their way to the northern states. However, the New York Times reported that one concern is that those venturing across the border risk freezing to death on their way to freedom.

Janet McFetridge, the mayor of the small village of Champlain, New York, said she keeps knit hats and gloves in her vehicle to hand out to migrants who have made it into the U.S., according to the New York Times.

“The weather is so severe you just can’t survive,” McFetridge said. “Border Patrol is working extremely hard to save people’s lives because that’s what it’s come down to.”

However, some people residing along the border are apprehensive about the number of people coming across.

Dale Tetreault, 57, a third-generation dairy farmer, said that three Guatemalan migrants crossed into the U.S. and took shelter in one of his milk houses. One of Tetreault’s workers, who is Latin American, spoke with the migrants in Spanish, and they said they had just crossed into the U.S. from Canada and were looking for work.


“I understand where they’re coming from and how horrible it has to be to make that kind of venture to get here, to try to find a place where you can find a good life,” Mr. Tetreault said.

“But on the other side, it’s like, I’m not going to accidentally house the wrong people, either, you know what I mean? It’s damned if you do, damned if you don’t.”

Officials in New Hampshire are reportedly trying to come up with a plan to put a stop to the border crossings with a bill that would allow landowners to put up “no trespassing” signs on open spaces.

Doing so would permit law enforcement to arrest undocumented migrants for criminal trespassing.

Clear Thoughts (op-ed)

The surge in illegal border crossings from Canada into northern states is a glaring example of our nation’s inadequate border security. This issue extends far beyond the southern border, and it’s time we address it.

Low staff and lack of fencing in the region have contributed to the increase in border crossings, with more than 12,200 migrants caught last year alone. This is a stark reminder of the importance of securing our borders, regardless of which direction the threat comes from.

Migrants are not only taking advantage of our weak northern border but also risking their lives in the process. The freezing temperatures and harsh weather conditions make this journey extremely dangerous, and yet, they still attempt it.

While some residents empathize with the migrants’ plight, others fear the potential consequences of housing the wrong people. This dilemma showcases the need for comprehensive immigration reform and proper border security measures.


The proposed bill in New Hampshire, allowing landowners to put up “no trespassing” signs on open spaces, is a step in the right direction. However, it’s crucial to take further action to ensure the safety and security of our nation.

Let us know what you think, please share your thoughts in the comments below.




  1. Jeremy

    February 13, 2024 at 8:15 pm

    The article states that 12,200 ‘migrants’ were caught last year. Our border with Canada is the largest unguarded international border in the world and the majority of it runs through wilderness. How many crossed that were not caught?
    The many people who enter our country on work visas to do the seasonal jobs required to support the summer tourist season here in the northeast are migrants. They do their jobs and go home at the end of the season. The people who enter our country illegally and intend to stay are illegal immigrants.

  2. Rat Wrangler

    February 16, 2024 at 8:04 am

    The migrants come here, both legally and illegally, for one of two reasons. One, to find jobs and make their lives better than they were in whatever third-world nation from which they came, or; two, to get a lot of free handouts from our government. Since illegal immigration is not mentioned in the Constitution, and legal immigration is barely mentioned, the federal government’s entire role in such should be to offer citizenship to those who properly apply for it and are qualified, and to protect our borders from those coming in illegally. The 10th Amendment clearly states that any legal responsibilities not mentioned in that document are the purview of the states, not the federal government. That means that, if states choose to disallow all services to illegals, and prohibit employers from hiring these undocumented workers, the illegal immigrants would have no reasons to come here at all, and the federal government could do nothing about it.

  3. Mark Konick

    February 16, 2024 at 9:34 am

    A nurse friend of mine (retired) lived in Vermont…right on the border. In fact she went to school in Canada, and returned home after school. We miss the old days where both US and Canadian citizens could cross freely for shopping, dinner, and just having plain old fun. “911” ruined all that.

  4. Robert Powers

    February 16, 2024 at 9:50 am

    They are crossing Maine as well….very easy to do. Many places are not electronically monitored!

  5. GREgoville

    February 16, 2024 at 10:52 am

    The statement that “ low staff and a lack of fencing” stopped me in my tracks. These two supposed deterrents might slow down illegals but will not phase them in the least. The empathy some Canadians feel for these people is part of the problem. Another part of the problem is the total refusal on the part of illegals to respect Canada’s or America’s immigrant requirements. Follow the laws and these people are welcome. Their illegal entrance into these countries indicates their refusal to follow ANY rules governing their becoming American or Canadian citizens.
    Seems to me that entering a country by breaking it’s laws is a poor way to start a new life.

  6. Nancy

    February 16, 2024 at 10:54 am

    There are way too many young men coming here who are of military age from many countries. One country that has recently had a large number of people coming here illegally is China. We will be sorry we allowed all these people to come here. I firmly believe this is an invasion and we will be at war on our own soil in the not too distant future.

  7. Joe T

    February 16, 2024 at 11:18 am

    Wake up from your coma America! The Apocalypse is here in the form of illegal migration into our country and our politicians have allowed it to happen! We have NO borders or national security! Taxpayers are paying billions of dollars to subsidize these illegals and the problem continues to grow exponentially! Isn’t it hat a clue? Our hospitals are going bankrupt, cities and states are going into the red financially, serious crime is skyrocketing, and the problem keeps getting worse as we dump more money into “supporting” the illegal migration! Our politicians are committing Treason by not securing this country and keeping us all safe! Whether your Democrat or Republican, you need to vote in November for those who are going to secure our nation from foreign attack! We are at a crossroads in our nation where we are about to lose everything our forefathers fought for! We will have no nation at all!

    • Tom McAvoy

      February 20, 2024 at 8:57 pm

      Well said. The truth hurts.

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