New York Times calls for an end of using Title 42

The New York Times calls for the end of using Title 42 as a tool for immediately returning asylum seekers at the Mexican border, saying that its justification, COVID risk, is no longer valid. Several administration officials have quit with scathing criticism.

As I’ve mention before, a key failure in the management of the border is dysfunction in our legal system, which inspires hope that persons can enter the country. As early as April, 2021, the backlog of cases, which was about 540,000 at the start of the Trump Administration, had ballooned to 1.3 million. The system is so backlogged that legally admitted asylees wait for a year to get formal permission to work.

In addition, the multi-state refugee management system in the world is broken. This is the case with the U.S. and the EU. The system lacks an assured, stable means of international coordination among countries for the movement of refugees. Because of the vast differences in economic, social and political outcomes depending where the refugee ends up, coordination among countries is both essential and very difficult in terms of politics and ethics.

Most recently, Belarus is importing refugees to create a crisis at its borders with EU neighbors.

According to the U.N, there were 26 million refugees, half under the age of 18. “There are also millions of stateless people, who have been denied a nationality and access to basic rights such as education, healthcare, employment and freedom of movement.”


The United States, like European countries (which has incurred a huge wave of asylum seekers since 2015) and most other countries are signatories to the U.N. convention on refugees, signed in 1951. A refugee according to the U.N. has a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion…” .

The definition of an asylum candidate in American law is a refugee who entered the U.S. American law uses a standard of “credible fear” to establish “well-founded fear.”


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