SAN DIEGO — Thousands of asylum seekers whose claims were denied or denied under a Trump administration policy that forced them to wait in Mexico for a court hearing, allowing them another chance at humanitarian safety will be granted, the Department of Homeland Security said Tuesday.
The Associated Press has learned that registration begins Wednesday, June 23, 2021, for asylum seekers who were subject to a “stay in Mexico” policy and had either their cases dismissed or prevented from appearing in court. was refused.
Under that criterion, it is unclear how many people would be eligible to be released in the United States pending a decision on their cases, according to a senior Homeland Security official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because The announcement was not made public.
But Michelle Klein Solomon, director of the International Organization for Migration for North America, Central America and the Caribbean, told the AP she expects at least 10,000. His organization is working closely with the administration to bring people to the border and ensure they test negative for COVID-19 before being allowed into the country.
The estimate may be low. There are about 7,000 asylum seekers whose cases were rejected — the vast majority in San Diego — and more than 32,000 whose cases were denied, mostly in Texas, according to Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse. It is unknown how many cases were dismissed for failure to appear in court.
Many are believed to have left the Mexican border area, thinking their affairs were over, raising the possibility that they would make the dangerous trek to return. The official said the administration is aware of those dangers and is considering bringing people to the United States, as it is doing to reunite families who are separated following Trump’s “zero tolerance” policy on illegal crossings. are gone.
The move is another significant effort to redress Trump’s policies, which Biden administration officials and their allies say were cruel and inhumane and defenders say have been extremely helpful in discouraging asylum seekers from coming to the US. were effective.
Biden put the policy on hold on his first day in office and soon allowed an estimated 26,000 asylum seekers to return to the United States with active cases while their cases unfolded, a process involving the court system with more than 1.3 million cases. It may take years. . More than 12,300 people with active cases have been admitted to the US since February, while others who have registered but not yet entered the country number about 17,000.
That still leaves out the thousands of asylum seekers whose claims were denied or rejected under the policy, officially known as the “Migrant Protection Protocol.” Lawyers have been pressurizing for months to get another chance, but the administration is silent, leaving them in legal limbo.