The US can no longer return immigrant families to Mexico
Since March 2020, the US has been rapidly returning undocumented immigrants detained by border forces to Mexico and other countries on grounds of health emergency. In fact, the global COVID-19 pandemic allowed the Trump administration to restrict immigration and thousands of immigrants have been deported without the opportunity to present their requests.
However, Mexico’s government has put several limits since November 2020 to protect its territory. For instance, Mexico is no longer detaining immigrant minors at the Centers of the National Immigration Institute but at the facilities of another agency, which focuses on family development.
Adding to that, the Mexican authorities are not allowing the US to return immigrant families or unaccompanied minors from the southern borders of the country, establishing new parameters to manage immigration at regional level, which represents a challenge for the new administration of the US, headed by President Joe Biden.
The Biden administration plans to improve the immigration system and implement international cooperation strategies to reduce irregular immigration and handle legal immigration more effectively. However, the humanitarian crisis at the US borders and the limits implemented by the Mexican government could delay the current administration’s plans.
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Border forces release immigrant families within the US
Since we are in the midst of an unprecedented health crisis, federal entities like CBP (Customs and Border Protection) and ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) try to follow social distancing protocols and prevent immigration detention centers and family centers to house a high number of people to avoid the massive spread of the Coronavirus.
However, since Mexico is not receiving immigrant families from the US and local detention centers have already reached their maximum capacity, border forces are releasing immigrant families into the US to prevent a massive outbreak of COVID-19 within detention facilities.
Most of these families plan to apply for political asylum in the US, trying to flee from danger, persecution and violence, and with the dream of building a better future for their beloved ones.
Other than that, border forces state that the influx of undocumented immigrants at the borders has increased substantially in recent weeks for multiple reasons. Let’s see some of them:
- President Joe Biden took office on January 20, 2021, and because his administration has a rather welcoming stance when it comes to immigration, hundreds of undocumented immigrants hope to reach the US borders to request international protection under the new administration.
- Current circumstances in Central America are forcing thousands of migrants to seek opportunities in the US. With this, we refer not only to the economic crisis brought by the global pandemic, but to the devastation brought by several hurricanes.
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