‘These types of bans rarely work’: Immigration expert on Biden asylum order

'These types of bans rarely work': Immigration expert on Biden asylum order

“These Types of Bans Rarely Work”:

An imminent controversy surrounds President Joe Biden’s recent asylum order, which has been met with criticism from various quarters. According to immigration experts, this type of restriction

rarely works

in stemming the flow of migrants seeking refuge in the United States. The order, which suspends the right to apply for asylum for certain nationalities for a 90-day period, was issued under Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in detention centers. However, experts argue that this policy does not address the root causes of migration and may even worsen an already complex situation.

Legal Challenges

Firstly, the legality of Biden’s asylum order is being questioned. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has already filed a lawsuit against the administration, arguing that it violates domestic and international law. The order is seen as a deviation from established procedures for seeking asylum, which require individuals to present themselves at ports of entry or cross the border between official checkpoints. Furthermore, critics argue that Title 42 is being misused as a public health measure when it was originally intended to deal with communicable diseases.

Ignoring the Root Causes

Secondly, experts contend that the asylum order overlooks the root causes of migration. The violence and instability in Central American countries continue to drive people northwards, and a blanket ban on asylum will not address these issues. Instead, experts recommend comprehensive immigration reform that includes measures to improve living conditions in source countries, increase legal channels for migration, and address the underlying socio-economic factors contributing to the migration crisis.

Potential Consequences

Finally, there are potential consequences of the asylum order that experts warn about. These include an increase in smuggling and human trafficking, a rise in dangerous border crossings, and further strain on the U.S. immigration system. Additionally, the order may harm U.S. relations with countries in Central America and Mexico, who view these actions as a violation of international refugee law.

In conclusion, Biden’s asylum order has been met with skepticism and controversy from immigration experts. Its legality is being challenged, it fails to address the root causes of migration, and it may have unintended consequences for U.S. immigration policy and relations with neighboring countries.

  • “Biden’s Asylum Policy Is Being Challenged in Court,” NPR, March 18, 2021, link
  • “Biden’s Asylum Ban: What Experts Say,” CNN, March 16, 2021, link

President Biden’s Asylum Order: Controversy and Implications

President Joe Biden‘s link signed on January 20, 2021, marked a significant shift in U.S. asylum policy. This order aimed to reverse many of the restrictive measures implemented under former President Donald Trump. The new administration’s approach intends to expand access to asylum, address the root causes of migration, and restore order at the U.S.-Mexico border. However, this move has sparked controversy among critics, who argue that it could encourage illegal immigration.

Overview of Biden’s Asylum Order

President Biden’s EO on asylum includes several key components:

  1. Reversing the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP): MPP, also known as “Remain in Mexico,” forced asylum seekers to stay in Mexico while their cases were being processed in the U.S.
  2. Ending the ban on asylum for those entering between ports of entry
  3. Reinstating the Central American Minors (CAM) program: This program allows certain children in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to apply for refugee status from the U.S.
  4. Restoring asylum eligibility for victims of gang and domestic violence

Controversy Surrounding Biden’s Order

Biden’s order will encourage illegal immigrationSupporters argue that the order will provide a “pull factor” for immigrants, but experts maintain that asylum seekers have long been leaving their countries due to violence and other persecution.
The U.S. cannot process asylum applications efficientlyBiden’s order includes provisions to increase capacity and efficiency in the asylum system, as well as addressing the root causes of migration.
Border security is still a concernThe order addresses border security by working with international partners and addressing the root causes of migration.

Expert Analysis

Experts, including the American Immigration Council and Human Rights First, support Biden’s asylum order. They argue that it aligns with international norms and human rights standards. Meanwhile, critics, such as the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), maintain that the order will exacerbate illegal immigration and border security issues. As this situation continues to evolve, it is crucial to monitor expert analysis and ongoing developments at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Background: Trump’s Asylum Policies and Their Impact

Since the beginning of his presidency, Donald Trump‘s administration implemented several controversial asylum policies that aimed to deter migrants from entering the United States. Two of these policies are the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) and the Remain in Mexico Policy. Both policies were introduced in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

Description of previous administration’s asylum bans and their purpose

Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), also known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy, required asylum seekers from Central America and South America to wait in Mexico while their cases were processed in the U.S. immigration courts. This policy was implemented under the guise of reducing border crossings and addressing the asylum backlog. The second policy, Remain in Mexico Policy, required asylum seekers to return to Mexico and apply for asylum there while their cases were being processed in the U.S.

Criticism, legal challenges, and consequences of Trump’s policies

Human rights concerns: Critics argue that these policies violate human rights, as they expose vulnerable individuals to violence, poverty, and other risks in Mexico. According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), asylum seekers were subjected to violence, extortion, and other abuses in Mexico. In some cases, they were unable to access legal representation or basic services.

Increased violence:

The policies have been linked to an increase in violence and crime against asylum seekers, particularly women and children. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) reported that between January 2019 and February 2020, there were at least 35 recorded cases of sexual violence against women and girls in Mexico under the MPP.

Backlogged courts:

Effectiveness in reducing the number of asylum seekers: Despite these policies’ goals, there is evidence suggesting that they did not significantly reduce the number of asylum seekers or deter illegal border crossings. Instead, they placed a heavier burden on an already overwhelmed immigration court system.

Consequences for asylum seekers:

The consequences of these policies were devastating for countless families, particularly those with young children. Many were forced to live in makeshift camps along the border or return to dangerous conditions in their home countries due to prolonged processing times and lack of resources.

Legal challenges:

These policies faced numerous legal challenges, with various advocacy groups and organizations, such as the ACLU, filing lawsuits against them. In December 2020, President Biden signed an executive order to end both policies and restart processing asylum claims in the U.S.

I Biden’s Asylum Order: A New Approach

Overview of EO 13985, “Temporary Revision of National Security Presidential Memorandum 7 (NSPM 7)”

On his first day in office, on January 20, 2021, President Joe Biden issued Executive Order (EO) 13985, titled “Temporary Revision of National Security Presidential Memorandum-7 (NSPM-7)” [1]. This order signaled a significant change in U.S. immigration policy, particularly regarding the handling of asylum seekers at the southern border. The most notable provisions of EO 13985 include:

  • Eliminating the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) or “Remain in Mexico” policy, which forced asylum seekers to wait in Mexico while their claims were processed in the U.S.
  • Prioritizing processing of unaccompanied minors and family units, ensuring they receive appropriate care and legal representation.

Initial reaction from immigration advocates and critics

Immigration advocates

Pro-immigration organizations, including the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Human Rights First, and Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), applauded Biden’s move, viewing it as a crucial step towards restoring human rights and dignity to the U.S. immigration system [2]. They argued that MPP had led to dangerous conditions for asylum seekers, including exposure to violence and exploitation, and prevented thousands of families from seeking safety and protection in the U.S.

Support from pro-immigration organizations
  • “The Biden Administration’s decision to terminate the Migrant Protection Protocols is a crucial first step toward rebuilding a more humane and just immigration system that respects human rights and dignity,” said Human Rights First’s Vice President for Programs, Elisa Massimino.
  • “President Biden’s action today is a significant step forward in our efforts to reunite families and protect unaccompanied children from harm,” said Eleanor Acer, Senior Director for Refugee Protection at Kids in Need of Defense.

Republicans, border states, and some Democrats

However, Biden’s order was met with criticism from Republicans, border states like Texas, and some Democrats. They argued that the move could lead to an increase in migrant arrivals at the southern border and put a strain on U.S. resources [3]. Some also expressed concerns about the potential for increased vulnerability to COVID-19 among unaccompanied minors and border agents.

Analysis from Immigration Experts:
Why These Types of Bans Rarely Work

Historical context of asylum bans and their impact on border control

Asylum bans, though politically appealing, have a questionable track record when it comes to effective border control.
Previous examples from U.S. history and other countries: The United States has a history of implementing asylum bans, most notably in the late 19th and early 20th centuries during times of significant migration. The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, for instance, suspended the issuance of new Chinese laborer immigration contracts for ten years. This legislation, however, did little to deter the flow of Chinese immigrants, leading instead to an increase in smuggling and clandestine entry. Similar patterns have been observed in other countries, such as Australia’s White Australia Policy (1901-1973), which aimed to restrict non-European immigration but ultimately failed.

Expert opinions on the shortcomings of asylum bans in addressing root causes

Ineffectiveness in deterring migration, especially during crises: Experts argue that asylum bans are an inadequate response to the root causes of migration. Migrants, driven by factors like economic instability, violence, and political unrest in their home countries, are likely to continue seeking refuge regardless of travel restrictions. The recent Syrian refugee crisis serves as a stark reminder of this reality; despite the European Union’s attempts to curb the influx through various measures, including border closures and asylum bans, millions continued to flee their war-torn homeland.

Humanitarian concerns and potential for increased suffering:

Moreover, asylum bans raise humanitarian concerns. Denying entry to those in desperate need of safety can exacerbate their suffering. Stranded migrants may resort to dangerous and exploitative measures, such as crossing deserts or seas, risking death or enslavement, in search of a better life. In addition, countries that impose asylum bans may force migrants to live in squalid camps or face harsh detention conditions.

Alternatives to asylum bans suggested by experts

Rather than relying on asylum bans, experts propose alternative measures that address the root causes of migration and improve international cooperation. Addressing root causes: This includes addressing economic instability, political unrest, and violence in origin countries through diplomacy, development assistance, and conflict resolution. Collaborative regional solutions: Working together to manage migration flows can prove more effective than unilateral actions. Countries sharing borders or dealing with similar immigration challenges can form partnerships for better information-sharing, resource allocation, and policy coordination. Focus on improving asylum processing systems: Ensuring fairness in the asylum application process is crucial for reducing the incentive to circumvent restrictions. Improving processing efficiency, increasing capacity, and ensuring human rights protections can help alleviate the burden on both applicants and host countries while upholding international obligations.

In light of the ongoing situation at the U.S.-Mexico border and the challenges in processing a surge of asylum claims while ensuring human rights and safety, it is crucial to reflect on expert analysis and recommendations for Biden’s asylum order and future policy directions.

Challenges in processing asylum claims:

Experts have emphasized the complexities of processing a large number of asylum claims, especially during a global crisis. The need to balance human rights and safety with efficient processing has been a persistent challenge.

Possible next steps for the Biden administration:

Based on expert recommendations, potential next steps for the Biden administration include engaging in diplomacy to address root causes and regional cooperation. This could involve working with Central American governments and international organizations to improve conditions that push people to migrate.

a. Regional cooperation:

Regional cooperation is essential for addressing the root causes of migration, such as poverty, violence, and lack of access to education and employment opportunities.

b. Improved asylum processing systems:

Investing in improved asylum processing systems is another crucial recommendation. This includes increasing resources for border control agencies, expanding capacity at immigration courts and detention facilities, and implementing technology solutions to streamline the application process.

Ongoing debates and potential implications for U.S. immigration policy:

The ongoing debates surrounding asylum policies and border control have significant implications for the future of U.S. immigration policy. Policymakers must balance humanitarian concerns with security and economic interests, while addressing the root causes of migration.