The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially announced on Friday that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will stop using Title 42 effective May 23. Title 42 has been the public health order Border Patrol has been using to quickly expel illegal immigrants to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the United States.
Title 42 is one of the last remaining Trump-era policies the Biden adminstration has yet to get rid of along the southern border but they have been under increasing pressure from Democrats and open border advocates to chuck it as COVID-19 cases within the U.S. are no longer surging. Republicans and Border Patrol have been warning once Title 42 is removed, the southern border will see an even bigger influx of illegal crossings once word has spread among the thousands of people waiting in Mexico.
"Title 42 is not an immigration authority, but rather a public health authority used by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to protect against the spread of communicable disease. Title 42 remains in place until May 23 and, until then, DHS will continue to expel single adults and families encountered at the Southwest border," said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
"Once the Title 42 Order is no longer in place, DHS will process individuals encountered at the border pursuant to Title 8, which is the standard procedure we use to place individuals in removal proceedings. Nonetheless, we know that smugglers will spread misinformation to take advantage of vulnerable migrants. Let me be clear: those unable to establish a legal basis to remain in the United States will be removed."
"Instead of listening to the millions of Americans that his administration has endangered—and instead of enforcing immigration laws passed by Congress—President Biden has chosen to jeopardize the safety and security of those very Americans he swore to protect and defend by ending Title 42 expulsions," Texas Govneor Greg Abbott said in response to the news. "Ending Title 42 expulsions will signal to cartels and migrants alike that our southern border is now wide open—inciting even more violence, more trafficking, and more lawlessness. President Biden clearly has no intention to secure the border by faithfully executing Congress’ command to detain and deport illegal immigrants. His actions will only further endanger Texans, and the State of Texas must take even more unprecedented action to keep our communities safe by using any and all constitutional powers to protect its own territory."
DHS is bracing for up to 18,000 apprehensions at the U.S.-Mexico border in the weeks after Title 42 is thrown out. Under the Biden administration, Title 42 was not applied to unaccompanied minors and large numbers of family units.
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