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Biden administration begins to return migrant families to Mexico the old-fashioned way

by Yucatan Times
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The Biden administration will immediately begin using a decades-old process to remove some migrant families who have illegally crossed the border from Mexico immediately from the United States.

The Department of Homeland Security implemented the expedited removal proceedings Monday without clarifying which families will be affected, but it is likely to apply to families that were supposed to be removed to Mexico under pandemic emergency protocols but were refused by Mexican state governments.

Under the health protocols implemented in March 2020, known as Title 42, all families were immediately turned away at the border.

Because they were not taken into custody and interviewed, they were not given the normal chance to protest their removal. In early 2021, some Mexican state governments refused to accept some families back on the basis that its shelters did not have room to accommodate everyone, leading the U.S. to release the families into the U.S. Families with older children are likely to be selected for expedited removal.

“Expedited removal provides a lawful, more accelerated procedure to remove those family units who do not have a basis under U.S. law to be in the United States,” DHS said in a statement.

Removals at the border differ from deportations in that deportations take place within the country and are the responsibility of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The CDC recommendation last year gave Border Patrol agents the ability to immediately send anyone caught crossing the border between land ports of entry back to Mexico. It did not permit families, adults, and children the chance to object to being returned during that process, as expedited removal proceedings will allow.

Expedited removal may initially slow how quickly Border Patrol agents are able to return migrants to Mexico, taking hours to up to a few days versus the two-hour average under the March 2020 public health protocol. Under expedited removal, migrants will be taken into custody and could face legal consequences for illegally entering the country, whereas for the past 17 months, the Border Patrol has rarely pursued charges.

The DHS reiterated that attempting to enter the U.S. not at a port of entry “is the wrong way to come.”

It is unknown how many families will be affected by this policy change. Since the start of the government’s 2020 fiscal year in October, more than 231,000 migrants who arrived with a family member have been encountered at the southern border.


TYT Newsroom

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