The new process outlined by DHS is one more way the Biden Administration is demonstrating its commitment to a safe, orderly, and humane immigration system.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced a plan to process eligible individuals who had been forced to return to Mexico under the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) and have pending cases before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). Beginning on February 19, DHS will start phase one of an effort to safely and effectively process individuals at the southwest border.
This latest action is another step in the Biden Administration’s commitment to reform immigration policies that do not align with our nation’s values.
This newly established process:
- Applies only to certain individuals in MPP. Only individuals with active cases before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) who were returned to Mexico under the MPP program and are currently outside the United States are eligible for this process. Individuals subject to MPP who do not currently have active immigration court cases will not be processed into the United States at this time. Individuals who believe they are eligible should remain where they are for further instructions.
- Does not signal any change to border enforcement. This announcement should not be interpreted as an opening for people to migrate irregularly to the United States. We will continue to enforce U.S. immigration law and border security measures throughout this process.
- Prioritizes the health and safety of the American public and migrants throughout the process. Partners will employ necessary safety precautions in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, including face coverings and social distancing. Individuals will be tested for COVID-19 before being processed into the United States. DHS will only process individuals consistent with its capacity to safely do so while fully executing its important national security and trade and travel facilitation missions.
- Represents a collaborative effort working towards a common goal. Through a whole-of-government approach, DHS, the Department of State, and the Department of Justice will collaborate with international partners—including the Government of Mexico and international and non-governmental organizations—to safely process eligible individuals to pursue their cases in the United States.
- Provides an innovative identification process. In collaboration with international organizations, the U.S. government will establish a triaging system in northern Mexico that identifies eligible individuals, prioritizes, and manages intake away from ports of entry and streamlines arrivals consistent with our capacity to safely process individuals.
A virtual registration process is accessible from any location and can be found at conecta.acnur.org. Once registered, eligible individuals will be provided additional information about where and when to present themselves.