Many immigrant advocates were looking forward to this day: the end of the two-year-old Title 42 border expulsion policy.
Those hopes were dashed last Friday, when U.S. District Judge Robert Summerhays in Louisiana issued a preliminary injunction that stopped the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from lifting the order.
Judge Summerhays determined that 24 plaintiff states fighting against the termination would face a “significant threat of injury” if Title 42 ends. He added predictions of increased border crossings in the ruling to drive home his point.
Immigration lawyers and experts are speaking against the latest development.
Aaron Reichlin-Melnick, senior policy counsel at the Immigration Council, said the ruling means “Title 42 will not end anytime soon.” He told the New York Times that the court’s decision will let the Biden administration shore up its post-Title 42 plan and seek additional resources from Congress if necessary. But “the longer Title 42 is kept in place the harder it will be for any administration to manage the border,” he said.
Civil rights litigator Karen Tumlin said “the Biden admin should not have waited this long to end” the policy. She added that the Republican states that challenged the termination used a familiar legal playbook by filing suit in an area where they’d get assigned to a Trump-appointed judge and then argue the Biden administration didn’t follow proper procedure in terminating the policy.
The CDC failed to go through a “notice & comment” process before terminating Title 42, the judge ruled, even though the Title 42 order was never established through notice and comment rulemaking.
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The decision means the CDC needs to notify the public of a proposed rulemaking before it can end Title 42, which public health experts have repeatedly said was established on a false premise. The needed comment period and following considerations could take as long as a year to complete.
The heaviest effects of Title 42 have fallen on asylum seekers, who will now continue to face a tough road to safety in the U.S.
Department of Justice spokesperson Anthony Coley said the department intends to appeal the decision.
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Around the U.S.
CBP processed 12,000+ unaccompanied migrant children previously expelled under Title 42: In 2021, many migrant parents separated from their children to let them enter the U.S. as unaccompanied minors, who are not subjected to the Title 42 policy. — CBS News
Illinois immigration public defenders plan to scale up: Since the state’s Defenders for All Act took effect this year, the county has taken over 12 cases for free and plans to increase staffing to handle more cases. — WTTW
Title 42 extension puts Ciudad Juárez on the cusp of a humanitarian crisis: The decision to not terminate Title 42 will likely lead to an oversaturation of shelters in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juárez. — El Paso Matters
Mexico’s supreme court rules migrant checks on buses and highways are unconstitutional: A ruling found in favor of three Mexican siblings who were detained and abused by immigration officials in 2015 during a crackdown backed by the U.S. government. — The Guardian
Federal government grants employers 35,000 more H-2B visas: An additional 20,000 visas were also granted in January. The visas are for employers that face “irreparable harm” if they cannot get additional workers. — Reuters