This week a U.S. public health measure known as Title 42 came to an end. The U.S. is supposed to allow people fleeing persecution to seek asylum. But Title 42 allowed the Department of Homeland Security to turn away asylum-seekers if detention centers lacked the room to hold them during the asylum vetting process. The policy made it difficult for migrants to even apply for asylum in the first place. They would often be released back into Mexico. But now, the old rules are back in place, and thousands of asylum seekers who have been stuck in limbo are poised to seek asylum again.
The Biden administration is also rolling out a new set of policies designed to address asylum claims before migrants physically reach the U.S. border. It’s created a mobile app which people can use to schedule an appointment with immigration officials and the State Department is working on plans to open regional processing centers throughout the Western hemisphere.
The new measures could upend a simple idea at the heart of a complex immigration system: that people fleeing violence and persecution have the chance to find refuge in the United States. That change has massive implications for those who live in the U.S. and those trying to reach it.
To help us understand the end of Title 42 and what comes next we have Adam Cox, Michelle Hackman, and Cristina Rodriguez. Michelle is a reporter who covers immigration at the Wall Street Journal. Adam and Cristina are law professors at NYU and Yale respectively. They wrote a book called “The President and Immigration Law.”
Listen to the podcast (transcript available as well) by clicking below.