Judge orders Biden to resume deportation of immigrant children at border

A Texas judge ruled on Friday that the Biden administration can no longer exempt unaccompanied immigrant children from a Trump-era order, which could lead to their resumption of border deportation.

Citing an obscure public health law known as Title 42 to contain the coronavirus, the United States is immediately deporting immigrants at the border, barring them from access to the asylum system or an immigration judge. Some immigrants are quickly deported to Mexico and others are repatriated by air. While Title 42 was launched by former President Donald Trump, the White House Biden has continued to enforce the policy and defend it in court — except for unaccompanied immigrant children.

In his order, however, Judge Mark Pittman told the government to stop the exemption. The order does not take effect for seven days, giving the government time to appeal.

Pittman, who was nominated by Trump, asked why the Biden administration thought it appropriate to exempt unaccompanied minors from Title 42 in two orders it issued in July 2021 and August 2021.

Unaccompanied minors “still spend, on average, more than a day herded together in a DHS facility, where they may expose other inmates, [Department of Homeland Security] personnel and U.S. citizens and residents to the viruses they carry,” Pittman said in his order.

The decision was criticized by advocates for immigrant children.

“Under no circumstances should a policy that has never been a matter of public health be used to turn children arriving alone at the border back to harm Mexico or their country of origin,” said Katharina Obser, director from the Migrant Rights and Justice program at the Women’s Refugee Commission. “An end to the policy has been long overdue, but there is no doubt that the Biden administration must now act immediately to end this illegal and xenophobic policy to keep children, families and adults fleeing harm safe. , and before a single unaccompanied child has returned to evil.

Pittman found that the government not only violated the Administrative Procedure Act, but actually put Texas in the position of suffering financial consequences. Pittman said the exemption from the order for unaccompanied children has led to the fact that “Texas has suffered and will continue to suffer significant financial losses.”

Since Title 42 was invoked in March 2020, attorneys and attorneys have criticized the policy’s effectiveness in helping to stop the spread of COVID.

Friday’s order came the same day the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit upheld a lower court’s ruling allowing the government to continue using Title 42, though the Biden administration has been prevented from deporting immigrant families to places where they will face persecution. or tortured.

More than 1.6 million immigrants and asylum seekers have been deported under Title 42, according to


customs and border protection.

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