Southern Border Updates

Barely a day goes by without some new development about the southern border.  In only the last few weeks:

  • The administration has requested an additional $4.5 billion in funds to help manage the border.
  • An unaccompanied Guatemalan teenager died in Department of Homeland Security custody.
  • The administration proposed making the U.S. an outlier regarding humanitarian protections for those fleeing persecution, by requiring asylum seekers to pay to apply for asylum, to pay for work permits, and to be ineligible for a work permit while their asylum cases are pending if they arrived at other than a port of entry.
  • A federal appeals court heard oral arguments in the government’s appeal of a lower court’s decision against the administration’s “Migrant Protection Protocols”, also called the “Remain in Mexico” policy that pushes asylum seekers from Central American countries back into Mexico while they await a chance to explain why they are seeking asylum and fled their home countries. The administration reports that over 1600 asylum seekers have been pushed back into Mexico under the policy.
  • The Attorney General Barr issued a decision that would require asylum seekers who arrive between ports of entry to be detained during the entire period that they are pursuing their asylum claims, eliminating their current ability to ask to be bonded out.

And this list is just the tip of the iceberg.

Here are a few items that you may have missed that might help you digest the substance and the impact of some of these developments.