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What Title 42 Has Wrought

May 27, 2022 (2 min read)

Yael Schacher, May 26, 2022

"... Refugees International has received hundreds of requests for help and information from asylum seekers in both Reynosa and Piedras Negras who wanted to understand what would happen on May 23. It has been difficult to provide them clear answers. And the confusion and expulsions have only continued since. The Louisiana Court’s ruling has kept Title 42 in place. But due to a competing decision from a federal circuit court in the District of Colombia, families manifesting fear of return to their home countries will, as of May 23, have to be screened before being expelled. Although guidance on how to do these screenings went out to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on May 23, the very next day the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) sent four flights carrying 538 people, including 76 children (27 of whom were infants), to Haiti. On May 25, there were three more flights to Haiti. It may be that those being expelled to Haiti have been in custody since before the new screening procedure was put in place. But the flights certainly send an appalling message about DHS disregard of the risks of sending families to harm. Is it any wonder that people who have been waiting to seek asylum for months are afraid and confused? ..."

"Yael Schacher is the deputy director for the Americas and Europe at Refugees International. Previously, Yael was Senior U.S. Advocate at Refugees International, focusing on U.S. asylum, U.S. refugee admissions, temporary protected status, and humanitarian visas. Prior to joining Refugees International, Yael researched the relationship between immigration and refugee policy for her forthcoming book on the history of asylum in the U.S. since the late nineteenth century. She taught at the University of Connecticut and lectured on immigration history and refugee policy at Harvard Law School, the University of Minnesota, Catholic University of Eichstaett-Ingolstadt and numerous academic conferences and public forums. While teaching at UConn, Yael helped with asylum and humanitarian visa cases at the Connecticut Institute for Refugees and Immigrants. While a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Texas at Austin just before starting at Refugees International, Yael combined historical research on asylum and advocacy on behalf of asylum seekers (with the law school’s immigration clinic and with the organization Justice for Our Neighbors). Yael has an M.A. in History and a Ph.D. in American Studies from Harvard University and a B.A. in literature from Columbia University. Follow her on Twitter: @YaelSchacher "