The Biden administration recently announced a new asylum policy designed to disqualify adult migrants from seeking asylum at the southern border. The proposed rule requires the rapid deportation of migrants who did not request protection from another country while traveling to the United States, and who did not apply for an interview appointment through a smartphone app prior to arrival at the southern border.
This new policy contradicts the Biden administration’s earlier promises to implement a humane approach to immigration on the southern border. Immigrant Justice Corps (IJC) joins other human rights organizations in rebuking this new policy, which would separate families and send asylum seekers back to danger.
“This is not the way to reform our asylum system,” said Jojo Annobil, Executive Director of IJC. “It is a function of our broken system that the United States is unable to process mass applications for asylum.”
The government’s smartphone app, which is intended to streamline the processing of asylum seekers, is overloaded, with the vast majority of the tens of thousands of asylum seekers trying to use the app being unable to schedule appointments with U.S. authorities. The new system effectively forces asylum seekers to play a lottery in order obtain protection in the United States. Historically, when the government limits asylum seekers’ ability to migrate through legal channels, trafficking increases and lives are endangered.”
“We need to build a system that is humane, transparent, and ensures the safety and protection of asylum seekers,” said Annobil. “We call on Congress and the administration to work together to reform our immigration system and policies.”