Source: Immigration Impact
“Even as President Trump downplays the threat of COVID-19, the Trump Administration is using the pandemic as a pretext to bar more people from the United States.” Most recently, the Trump administration proposed a new asylum bar that would make individuals ineligible from claiming asylum or withholding of removal if they are from, or passed through, a country with a disease outbreak. The rule is not limited to the current pandemic, but broadly includes any “communicable disease of public health significance.”
This new rule would also create a much higher standard for credible fear interviews. “The standard for these screening interviews is supposed to be low to ensure that the government doesn’t wrongly deport a person to a life-threatening situation… And even if an asylum seeker can meet this high bar, the proposed rule allows immigration officials to deport that person to a third country without giving them a full hearing before an immigration judge.”
With all the current asylum bars in place, it is already very difficult for individuals to apply for these avenues of humanitarian relief. Sarah Pierce, an analyst at the Migration Policy Institute in Washington, stated “They use multiple bureaucratic and policy tools to insulate their changes from litigation. The administration has been using the pandemic to move its immigration agenda forward.” See here: https://wapo.st/3095aPj
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