Inside Sources: Salt Lake County Mayor’s trip to U.S.-Mexico border

Sep 20, 2019, 6:24 PM | Updated: Apr 13, 2020, 2:30 pm

Jenny Wilson background checks...

Photo: KSL TV

Salt Lake City — Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson joined Inside Sources host Jason Perry on Friday to talk about her recent daylong trip to the El Paso, Texas, and on the broken immigration situation at the US-Mexico border.

Perry asked her why she decided to visit El Paso.

Wilson said she traveled to the border as part of a delegation of the National Association of Counties because federal immigration policy is affecting the situation on the ground in Salt Lake County.

“I just wanted to see for myself. There’s a lot of hyperbole and finger-pointing. I wanted to know what was really going on,” she said.

What can you do about [immigration] as mayor of Salt Lake County, “when the federal government has not been able to [reform] it?” Perry asked.

“We have to keep working to support our population on the ground here [in Salt Lake County],” she said. “We have a growing Latino population. We have people living in the shadows, many of them children who came here not by their own choice. Many are enrolled in the University of Utah.

She cited the work of the Mayor’s Office of New Americans, whose leader is out in the community daily supporting and welcoming the newest residents of Salt Lake County.

She said, “I think I can become a more active participant in a local coalition that will help lobby Congress for change. It’s time for a resolution. I don’t care who the president is; I don’t care who the speaker of the House is or what the party affiliation is. We need to come together.”

“The system has been without reform for far too long,” she said.

She was concerned about a recent Trump administration policy of asking Mexico to shelter asylum-seekers from Central and South America while they await their day in U.S. immigration court.

“These people are waiting for months and months and months. I was told it would be next summer before court cases that were eligible today would actually be reviewed,” Wilson said. “We are now asking Mexico, one of the poorest nations in the world, to shelter these people, fold them into the community.

“It is a failure of our nation, with the resources that we have, with the acceptance that we have in the state and the interest in solving it. I would be more than happy to check a box to raise my own taxes to assure that we are doing our best with this population while we work through this system.

“I just don’t think it’s logical nor fair,” she said, “to pass the buck over to Mexico.”

Wilson said she didn’t think Congress is best set up for the “in-depth work that it takes” to tackle issues surrounding the U.S. immigration system.

“Our academic institutions are better equipped to do it. The county government is probably better equipped,” she said.

“Maybe we could ask Congress to fund a special envoy who comes together locally with specialists, with attorneys and with those who have worked with these communities and give them a six-month timeframe to come up with a real proposal, a bipartisan proposal,” Wilson said.

“One of the things I’m going to try to figure out is how my voice matters now that I’ve had this unique experience,” she said.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Inside Sources

Christmas tip...

Curt Gresseth

If you tip more during Christmas, are you feeling generous or pressured?

Most American say they will tip more, or the same amount as last year, during this Christmas season.

2 days ago

governor cox and several other people speak about his plan to address homelessness in utah...

Aimee Cobabe and Hugo Rikard-Bell

Gov. Cox releases budget plan to improve homelessness resources in Utah

Gov. Spencer Cox's office said Utah has gaps in how it addresses homelessness. His plans will attempt to close those gaps.

4 days ago

Two street signs pointing in opposite directions. One reads "censorship" and the other reads "free ...

Mariah Maynes

The role university leaders play in promoting free speech

University leadership plays a valuable role in promoting free speech on college campuses. By modeling discourse and promoting factual information, they can encourage students to do the same.

11 days ago

President M. Russell Ballard might have been losing his vision himself, but he never stopped inviti...

Boyd Matheson

Boyd Matheson: President M. Russell Ballard inviting all to “come and see!”

President M. Russell Ballard spent his life inviting people to "come and see."

22 days ago

BEIJING, CHINA - DECEMBER 04: Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) shake hands with U.S Vice President ...

Mariah Maynes

Biden-Jinping meeting: what’s on the agenda?

A long awaited meeting between President Biden and China's president, Xi Jinping will occur on Wednesday in San Francisco, California.

24 days ago

The U.S Supreme Court building....

Kristine Weller

Separation of powers: How the Supreme Court will weigh in

The Supreme Court will be considering a variety of cases that have the potential to reign in federal bureaucracy.

24 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Human hand holding a protest banner stop vaping message over a crowded street background....

Prosperous Utah Communities

Utah’s Battle to Protect Youth from Vaping Epidemic Faces New Threat as Proposed Rule Threatens Progress

Utah's strict standards of nicotine levels in vaping products are at risk, increasing health hazards associated with use. Read more about how you can advocate for a better future for Utah's youth.

Inside Sources: Salt Lake County Mayor’s trip to U.S.-Mexico border