Mexico and U.S. Officials Reach Deal to Reinstate Migrant Protection Protocols
After campaign promises of ending Trump-era immigration policies, the Biden Administration announced in early December 2021 that it would be reinstating the 'Remain in Mexico' program (formally referred to as Migrant Protection Protocols), requiring non-Mexican asylum seekers and migrants to wait for their U.S. immigration court hearings in Mexico. This comes after a Texas federal judge ordered that the Administration violated the law by abruptly ending the program in early 2021.
However, White House press secretary Jen Psaki affirmed that both the United States and Mexico were reluctant in reinstating the policy, but the governments have been working closely together to reach a deal for improvements.
Changes Under the Reimplementation
To reimplement this policy, the Mexican government required that certain conditions be met to ensure humanitarian improvements would be made, including:
- Reexamining who is considered an exempt, vulnerable individual under the policy (elderly, disabled, etc.).
- Expediting asylum cases in under 180 days.
- Guaranteed access to legal services for asylum seekers.
- Offering COVID-19 vaccines to all individuals enrolled in the program.
The Justice Department has also moved to manage the more than 1.3 million backlogged cases by reassigning 22 judges specifically to handle asylum cases in order to be compliant with the new 180 day limit. These hearings will be conducted in the following Texas cities: San Diego, El Paso, Laredo, and Brownsville.
Both U.S. and Mexican officials agree that this is intended to be a temporary policy and aim to make significant improvements in the meantime.
United States Immigration Attorneys
If you or a loved one is being affected by the reimplementation of this policy, Maney | Gordon | Zeller, P.A. is here to help. Our experienced immigration attorneys are available to discuss your case and help ensure your rights are protected.
Call (800) 708-4399 immediately or fill out this short form to schedule a consultation.