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Biden Administration Ends “Stay in Mexico” Policy

DHS claims the program will be dismantled in a “swift and orderly manner”.
Joe Biden pone fin a la política de “Permanecer en México” | Fotomontaje: ADN America
Joe Biden pone fin a la política de “Permanecer en México” | Fotomontaje: ADN America

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) confirmed on Monday that it ended the Trump-era “Remain in Mexico” policy, which required asylum seekers to wait in Mexico while their cases were being heard.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 30 that the president could end the policy. However, DHS officials had remained silent since then, arguing that they had to wait for the court to certify the ruling and for Donald Trump-appointed Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk to lift his injunction.

The Supreme Court certified its ruling last week, the Associated Press reported.

DHS said in a statement that the program will be dismantled in a “swift and orderly manner.” No more people will be enrolled and those who appear in court will not be sent to Mexico.

The policy “is endemically flawed, imposes unjustifiable human costs, and takes resources and personnel away from other priority efforts to secure our border,” the statement said.

The program was considered cruel and dangerous, leaving vulnerable people in unsafe conditions in border towns.

It is not yet known whether denied applicants would get a second chance or whether those whose next court dates are months away would be able to return to the United States sooner. DHS said it will provide more information in the coming days.

Since the policy was implemented in January 2019 until its initial suspension when Biden took office, at least 70,000 people were sent to Mexico, according to the American Immigration Council, a nonprofit organization founded in 1987 that advocates for immigrants.

Nearly 5,800 people were subject to the policy from December through June. Nicaraguans represent the largest number, followed by Cuban, Colombians, and Venezuelans.

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