According to new data released by Customs and Border Protection, Border Patrol arrested 98,977 people in April—more than in any other single month since 2007.

April has historically been one of the busier months for illegal crossings of the United States–Mexico border, and, in past years, the numbers have dipped during the summer months. But at the current rate of apprehensions, 2019 is on pace to see over a million arrests. This could mean that, after years of remaining at historic lows, border apprehensions are returning to high levels.

Is the U.S. facing a new, historic illegal immigration crisis? Trump officials claim that the answer is a resounding yes. “Our apprehension numbers are off the charts,” Carla Provost, the chief of Border Patrol, said during Senate testimony on Wednesday. “It’s like holding a bucket under a faucet. It doesn’t matter how many buckets we have if we can’t turn off the flow.”

But understanding what’s happening on the border requires more than just a look at the numbers. Here’s some key context for this new data….

Pacific Standard Magazine