Title 42 is Coming to an End, What’s Next?

Following a successful ACLU class action lawsuit, Title 42 has finally come to an end. Since March 2020, US border officials have expelled 2.5 million migrants and asylum seekers under the authority granted by this policy. Unfortunately, expulsions and exemption procedures are set to continue in the weeks leading up to the December 21st deadline. 

People on the move have been at the mercy of precarious state policies, like Title 42 and Migrant Protection Protocols. The organizations supporting migrants have undoubtedly done their best to provide refuge from violence and instability throughout their journey. But frankly, it’s frustrating to witness a policy end with such fragmented information around what will happen next. 

HIP’s Migration and Forced Displacement (MFD) grantees like Al Otro Lado, Las Americas, and WOLA have cautiously celebrated the decision and are now pushing for its swift implementation. The federal judge's decision to end the policy was a hard-won victory thanks to the work of the pro immigrant rights movement. But, these organizations are alarming us to the systematic abuse that migrants continue to face as they seek asylum under the current policy. The end of Title 42 has also raised concerns of how the US will approach the asylum process and if humane rather than restrictive measures will be implemented. 

In a joint letter, 89 organizations have urged the Biden administration to use this opportunity to restore the asylum system and guarantee fair processing to protect people who have been forced to migrate. The most recent example can be seen with the over 100,000 Venezuelans on the move that have been trapped in Mexico and Central American countries such as Honduras and Costa Rica. This call to action highlights the repeated risks that asylum seekers that have been expelled to Mexico face and how overwhelmed frontline organizations in the region have been in trying to protect the communities affected by these egregious policies. 

Over the last few months of 2022, the MFD team visited cities along the US-Mexico border including Matamoros, Reynosa, and Ciudad Juárez in Mexico as well as McAllen and El Paso in Texas. With $9M already dedicated to this movement over the last 5 years, MFD has counted on their extensive partner network of more than 100 organizations across US, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Colombia, Perú and Chile for reports. They observed and shared firsthand challenges and vulnerabilities that partners were confronted with in their effort to support communities on the move. Alongside partners within the network, they have planned to discuss current policies and next steps in this fight to protect migrants. To learn more, you can join “The Impacts of Migration Policy" on December 7th, 2022 @ 3pm ET/ 2pm CST/ 12pm PT.