IJC News

IJC alumni testify before Congress on ending Title 42 and creating an orderly asylum system

On April 6, IJC Justice Fellow alumni Kennji Kizuka (Associate Director, Research and Analysis at Human Rights First) and Aaron Reichlin-Melnick (Policy Counsel at the American Immigration Council) testified before the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security at a hearing about Title 42, a Trump-era policy which allows the U.S. to quickly deport migrants at the southern border.

During their testimony, Aaron Reichlin-Melnick (IJC Justice Fellow Class of 2014) and Kennji Kizuka (IJC Justice Fellow Class of 2015), called for an end to Title 42 and for the need to establish an orderly, humane asylum process at the southern border.

“I am here today with one clear message: Title 42 has failed,” said Reichlin-Melnick in his testimony. “Title 42 is neither a meaningful public health measure nor a successful deterrent.”

“Extending the Title 42 policy for another two months or another two years will not, and cannot, stop refugee displacement,” said Kizuka. “Its continued use will only return yet more people who are running for their lives and hoping to find refuge in the United States to death, torture, rape, abduction, and other egregious human rights violations.”

The IJC alumni argued that the United States has the capacity to welcome asylum seekers and treat them with humanity. They highlighted the need to invest in developing an orderly humanitarian protection system and address the root causes of migration.

“We are incredibly proud of our talented alumni,” said Jojo Annobil, IJC’s Executive Director. “IJC is committed to growing the next generation of immigration lawyers and policy makers, and we’re delighted to see Aaron and Kennji at the forefront of American immigration policy.”

Aaron Reichlin-Melnick and Kennji Kizuka will continue to work with government officials to find humane, actionable solutions to support refugees.

IJC celebrates the accomplishments of these alumni, who spoke up for the dignity of every immigrant. We will continue to provide support to refugees during this tumultuous time, and we are ever more emboldened by our mission to recruit and train passionate immigration law advocates.

Watch a recording of the House hearing.

Read Aaron Reichlin-Melnick’s testimony.

Read Kennji Kizuka’s testimony.