(USNewsMag.com) – When President Joe Biden took office in January 2021, he ended the policy which detained migrant families with children who illegally cross the border. Now, as Title 42 is set to come to an end in May, the administration is considering the reinstatement of policy.
Administration officials are said to be considering options ahead of the Title 42 expiration as migrant border crossings continue to remain high with an increase expected with the end of Title 42. A public health order, Title 42 allows for border patrol agents to turn away certain migrants immediately.
The long-term detention of migrant families with children is a policy first enacted by former President Barack Obama’s administration. The program was expanded under former President Donald Trump’s administration. When the program was ended by the Biden administration, the two Texas detention facilities for migrant families were converted to two detention sites and rapid processing hubs for single adults.
Reviving the policy would mean migrant parents and minor children would be detained in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facilities during which time asylum officers would determine whether the families should be allowed to seek U.S. refuge.
According to an official in the Biden administration, if revived the detention of families with children would comply with the Flores agreement, which is a decree by the court that governs the detention of minors in U.S. immigration custody.
Democrats are speaking out in anger over the idea of the policy being reinstated, with critics saying the policy could lead to separation of families. Democrats have spoken out about how the administration is not fulfilling its promise of an approach to immigration that is more compassionate.
In recent months, the Biden administration has sought to enact stricter policy regarding migrants illegally crossing at the southern border of the U.S., with illegal border crossing reaching new highs in 2021 and 2022.
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