Updated: Sep 23
For Immediate Release
August 2, 2022
Contact: Sarai Herrera
LOS ANGELES: Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States certified its decision in Biden v Texas, which affirmed President Biden’s power to finally end the cruel and inhumane Remain in Mexico Program, known formally as the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP). Now that the Supreme Court has certified the judgment, the Fifth Circuit should promptly vacate the lower court’s injunction. The Biden administration should then take immediate action to restore a humane asylum process for the thousands of human beings who have been denied due process and subjected to unimaginable harm. Since the Trump Administration enacted MPP in 2019, over 70,000 people have been denied meaningful access to our asylum system and have been forced into dangerous conditions where they have been extorted, kidnapped, tortured, raped, or murdered. Moreover, the program has had a disparate impact on Black, indigenous, and LGBTQ+ people. The Biden Administration should end MPP immediately to ensure that asylum seekers have the right to request asylum in the United States. On July 20, 2022, ImmDef joined dozens of civil rights organizations in issuing the following recommendations to the Biden Administration:
Immediately end the return of any individuals to Mexico under MPP 2.0.
Provide accurate and up-to-date information to people who were affected by both MPP 1.0 and MPP 2.0 about when and how they will be processed into the U.S. for a fair opportunity to seek asylum.
Coordinate with shelters, international organizations, local nongovernmental agencies, and immigration legal service providers
Create an expeditious, safe, and organized process by which people subjected to both iterations of MPP have a meaningful opportunity to pursue their asylum claims within the United States;
Facilitate transportation of individuals returned under MPP to Mexico or home country into the U.S. to safely pursue their asylum claims.
Provide individuals who were subjected to MPP who currently reside in the U.S., the opportunity to pursue their asylum claims
In response to today’s certification Lindsay Toczylowski, Executive Director at Immigrant Defenders Law Center, stated “What the Biden administration does next, and how quickly they do it, is a test of whether they truly intend to restore human rights at our border. Every moment of delay in ending this policy is another moment where human lives are in danger. It’s time to end this dark chapter in our history and move forward with restoring an orderly, just and humane process for asylum seekers.” “It is long past time that we end the Remain in Mexico program once and for all. Too many lives were harmed, too many families were separated, and too many hopes were dashed,” said Alvaro M. Huerta, Director of Litigation & Advocacy at Immigrant Defenders Law Center. “We cannot wait another minute to begin the much-needed restoration of dignity and due process to our immigration and asylum system. The Biden Administration must act today." The Supreme Court of the United States has opened the opportunity for the Biden Administration to end the deadly Remain in Mexico program and to remedy the harm caused by both iterations of the policy. Asylum is a human right, and the United States has obligations under both domestic and international law to provide asylum seekers due process and safety as they flee life-threatening situations.
Immigrant Defenders Law Center (ImmDef) is a next-generation social justice law firm that defends our immigrant communities against injustices in the legal system. We envision a future where no immigrant will be forced to face an unjust immigration court alone. Our programs are a first step towards the long-term goal of providing universal representation to all immigrants facing deportation. ImmDef is now the largest non‐profit, pro bono provider of deportation defense in California with offices in Los Angeles, Adelanto, Riverside, Santa Ana, and San Diego.