Omer Malik, 19, takes a last look back toward the United States before crossing illegally into Canada at the end of Roxham Road in Champlain, N.Y.
2 / 11
A Mobile station in update NY that doubles as a drop-off point for Greyhound Bus, a popular transportation method for asylum seekers heading to the Canadian boarder.
3 / 11
Janet McFetridge has been collecting items discarded by asylum seekers crossing illegally into Canada. She has found small toys, an iPhone X, bus tickets, credit cards and driver’s licenses.
4 / 11
A family gets of a bus as they prepare to head to the Canadian boarder.
5 / 11
A taxi driver (who preferred not to have her face or name shown) sits in her car for a photo. She regularly carries people from this Mobile station to the boarder crossing on Roxham Road.
6 / 11
Janet McFetridge, 66, explains to a family of Palestinian asylum seekers what will happen when they try to cross the border. McFetridge waits at this waypoint year-round, offering snacks, clothes and toys for children on the journey to Canada.
7 / 11
Asylum seekers enter a shelter on the Canadian side of Roxham Road, which starts near Champlain, N.Y. The outpost was built to help process the recent surge of refugees and asylum seekers, which can total about 50 people a day.
8 / 11
Ready-made beds are seen in a small basement classroom of the First Presbyterian Church in Plattsburgh, N.Y. The room is kept ready and available to asylum seekers who might need a place to stay before crossing the border.
9 / 11
The beginning of Roxham Road, in Champlain, N.Y., where it intersects with the famous North Star Road — said to have been a guiding light to slaves on the run nearly two centuries ago.
10 / 11
At the end of Roxham Road in Champlain, Fiyori Mesfin, 32, crosses into Canada with her 3-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter, both U.S. citizens. She had been living in Las Vegas for four years but was denied asylum status.
11 / 11
A view toward the terminus of Roxham Road — and Canada.
Families, single mothers, teenagers traveling alone, and many others, are using a small, illegal border crossing at the end of Roxham Road in Plattsburgh, New York, to initiate the asylum process in Canada. Knowing that they would be denied asylum if they arrived in Canada directly, the method of crossing illegally and being arrested forces the process to begin due to a loophole in Canadian law. The ordeal is relatively easy and has become so popular that some are applying for visitor visas to the United States of America with the intention of crossing into Canada. Others have lived in the United States previously and have been denied asylum or fear deportation by ICE. The area has a long history with the Underground Railroad, and a small community of people assisting the asylum seekers see this situation as a modern day version of the network that existed in the first half of the 19th century.