Yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control officially extended Title 42, a ban on those seeking asylum at the US southern border due to public health concerns. Jesuit Refugee Service/USA expresses deep disappointment in this announcement and encourages the Administration to fully rescind these unnecessary restrictions.
Since first introduced in March 2020, JRS/USA has asserted that these restrictions are not only unnecessary to protect public health, but unduly deny our legal and moral obligation to help those seeking safety. Due to Title 42 restrictions, more than 1 million migrants and asylum seekers, have not been afforded their legal right to seek asylum, but instead are immediately returned to Mexico where they face uncertain and often dangerous living conditions.
“Our brothers and sisters hoping to seek safety should be welcomed and supported in their legal right to seek asylum,” said Joan Rosenhauer, Executive Director of JRS/USA. “I have just been to our southern border and have met people whose fate and security continue to be unknown. We urge the US to put measures in place that manage risks to public health during the pandemic, but that do not deny anyone the right to seek protection.”
JRS/USA documented the negative impact of Title 42 in our report Seeking Protection in a Pandemic: COVID-19 and the Future of Asylum and serves those on our southern border through our Binational Border Response Program, Caminar Contigo.