Biden administration proposes various border strategies as Title 42 ends
In the wake of a U.S District Judge ruling that Title 42 is unlawful, the Biden administration is considering some drastic measures, including denying some single adults seeking asylum the legal right to do so at the U.S. border unless they have first attempted to apply for legal ways to enter other countries through which they have traveled. Another proposal is to ramp up prosecutions for single adults who have not committed a criminal act other than illegally crossing the border, focusing on those who evade Border Patrol. In addition, officials are looking at increasing the number of Venezuelans allowed to enroll in a new sponsorship program, which initially allows for up to 24,000 Venezuelans to apply. They are also looking at the possibility of extending the program to include Nicaraguans.
The administration will have to face the realities of limited space and resources at Border Patrol stations, detention facilities, and migrant shelters on both sides of the border as well as the number of people already arriving at the border as they consider the plausibility of enacting such strategies. This situation once again highlights the need to create sustainable solutions that would lead to a more humane, orderly, and secure border.
How many migrants have died in Qatar?
A report by Amnesty International details exploitation and abuse of migrant workers employed in Qatar since the country won the rights to host the World Cup 2022. According to an analysis by The Guardian, as of February 2021 more than 6,500 migrant workers, many of whom had been working on World Cup 2022 related projects, had died. In response, Qatari officials have stated the number of those employed on World Cup projects who have died is 37 and only 3 of them were work-related deaths. However, according to Reuters, Hassan Al Thawadi, the secretary general of Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, said in a TV interview with British journalist Piers Morgan that aired on Nov. 30 that the number of migrant worker deaths at World Cup-related projects was "between 400 and 500".
Immigrants rights groups sue Governor DeSantis over migrant flights
Three Florida-based immigrants rights groups have filed a lawsuit against Ron DeSantis and Florida Transportation Secretary Jared Perdue for arranging flights that sent about 50 migrants from the Texas border to Martha’s Vineyard in September. They argue that DeSantis and Perdue were “infringing upon the federal government’s immigration system by creating a separate, parallel immigration system.”
A bipartisan immigration deal could be within reach
It appears as though Senators Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) have reached an agreement on a draft of immigration reform compromises. Some of the main issues it addresses include some form of path to citizenship for 2 million Dreamers, a significant increase in resources to speed up the processing of asylum seekers, more resources to speed up the removal of migrants who do not qualify for asylum, a continuation of Title 42 restrictions with a target one-year end date, and more funding for border officers.
The deal needs 10 Republican Senators to support it in order to overcome a filibuster and 50 Democratic Senators to agree to the compromises set forth in the drafted framework. The purpose of the compromise is that it gives Democrats the permanent solution for Dreamers they have been working for and strengthens the defense of the due process rights of some migrants and it offers the Republicans a solution for faster removal of migrants from the U.S. who do not qualify for asylum.
“The devil is in the details,” states Robyn Barnard, a lawyer for Human Rights First. “We believe Congress should protect dreamers,” but she also noted that it’s “unconscionable” to “trade the lives of one immigrant group for another.” However, if it looks as though 10 Republicans support the proposed deal, the possibility of reaching a bipartisan agreement could entice Democrats to agree to the compromises.