During a press conference on March 25, President Biden promised the press will gain access to detention facilities at the U.S.-Mexico border, but said he doesn‘t know when. News media and advocacy groups have pressed for access amid a rapid increase in the number of minors being detained and held temporarily after attempting to enter the country.
On March 22, White House press secretary Jen Psaki noted that the administration is coordinating with the agencies involved to ensure privacy and COVID-19 protocols are in place before the press is granted access to facilities. Both Biden and Psaki have expressed their commitment to transparency.
The administration has drawn sharp criticism for its stance. “The First Amendment is not suspended during public emergencies and the coronavirus pandemic is no exception,” argues a March 24 letter from advocacy groups pressing for access.