Community groups in the Yuma area have set up temporary facilities to house the families and to provide food and shelter while they assist migrants with travel plans to leave the border city.

The Border Patrol issued a statement Thursday announcing its decision, which followed the lead of officials in the Rio Grande Valley in south Texas, who last week began releasing families from their custody.

“U.S. Border Patrol processing centers are not designed to house the current numbers of families and small children that we are encountering,” the Border Patrol’s Yuma sector said in a written statement. “Due to capacity issues at our stations and the ongoing humanitarian crisis nationwide, Border Patrol has begun identifying detainees for potential release in Yuma with a notice to appear for their immigration hearings.”