Is the humanitarian crisis on our Southern border due to more people being apprehended at the border than we have seen historically?
No - the number of people apprehended at the Southern border is near a fifty year low as described here and here.
Will building fences, walls or hiring more border agents help alleviate this humanitarian crisis?
Building fences, a wall or hiring more border agents will have no impact on the number of people seeking entry at the border. Spending money on these projects takes money away from solutions that would help alleviate the crises - thereby only making matters worse.
Hiring administrative judges will help. The backlog for judges is currently at about 2000 cases per judge. There are currently almost 800,000 immigration cases on backlog. It takes more than 500 days to process an asylum case that results in an order for removal. Using our current "lock em up" strategy that means taxpayers will pay about $350,000 to keep that individual in a private detention center for 500 days. That sounds like a lot you say?
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, corporations that run for profit tent cities to house migrant minors charge $775 per person per day.
If you are an investor in private prisons these are good times. Private prison stocks rose over 100% in the four months after Donald J. Trump was elected president.
Former Chief of Staff John Kelly has an interesting personal history in the profit aspects of locking up innocent children. Prior to coming to the White House he was on the board of directors of DC Capital Partners, a Washington private equity firm behind a corporate conglomeration that operates for profit private prisons for migrant children. While at the White House he was the first White House Official to announce the government would be separating children from their families. After leaving the White House he returned to the Tiny Tots Prison Corporation (aka Caliburn International) as a member of their board of directors.