Statement by Eric Schwartz, president of Refugees International, on the memorandum from DHS Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas on termination of the Remain in Mexico program:
“It is deeply gratifying that a senior government official is prepared to make such an unequivocal statement about morality, fairness, the rule of law, and basic decency.
We welcome the Biden administration’s new memo terminating the Remain in Mexico program (or Migrant Protection Protocols, MPP) and request that an appeals court vacate a lower court’s ruling to reimplement the program. As the explanation of the new termination memo states, “the United States has a moral obligation to fairly consider” asylum claims of those seeking protection at the southwest border. Instead, MPP sent over 70,000 people back to Mexico to wait for U.S. court hearings in deprivation and danger, or in the words of Secretary Mayorkas, “subject to extreme violence and insecurity.” “No amount of resources,” Mayorkas writes in yesterday’s termination memo, can make MPP humane or fair given the policy’s “unjustifiable human costs.” Relegating the policy the dustbin of history is a first step towards an asylum system that builds better, not backward.”
For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Refugees International Director of Communications Sarah Sheffer at firstname.lastname@example.org or +1 202 540 7029.
PHOTO CAPTION: A bird rests on top of a section of border wall fencing near the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) San Ysidro Port of Entry at the U.S. Mexico border on February 19, 2021 in San Diego, California. (Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)