There is that little issue of the law.
The Trump administration signed agreements with several border states that the federal government wouldn’t change immigration policy without giving them notice. Biden signed an executive order on his first day changing policy anyway. A federal judge in Texas stayed that order for at least two weeks, and deportations have continued.
One group of Haitians that had entered from Mexico and requested asylum were summarily sent back.
They arrived back in Mexico without shoes, identification documents or even children’s diapers.
Held by U.S. immigration officials in detention over several days, the group of over 100 Haitian asylum seekers were sent back across the border earlier this week carrying little more than the clothes on their backs, according to immigration advocates and a memo shared with the Miami Herald.
The group immediately stood out as they arrived from El Paso in Juárez, one of Mexico’s most dangerous border cities under a public health measure known as Title 42 that the Trump administration invoked during the coronavirus pandemic, said Tania Guerrero, an immigration attorney in the area.
Officials in the Caribbean nation were notified this week to expect 14 flights in the first half of February — some as frequent as twice a day.
That’s far higher than the two monthly flights U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement chartered to Haiti back in March at the start of the pandemic, and about as high as during a peak period around last year’s presidential election.
Amid an uproar from Haitian activists, the Biden administration grounded two scheduled flights Friday that were supposed to arrive with 135 passengers each. It is unclear if the flights will be rescheduled or if 10 other scheduled flights will continue. The White House and the Department of Homeland Security didn’t respond to multiple requests seeking more information.
The removals underscore the challenges the new president will face in trying to push through a campaign promise to reduce deportations and transform the immigration system during a pandemic. Activists monitoring the removals say many are being done under Title 42, which allows federal officials to send migrants back to halt the spread of the virus. They say children and even infants have been aboard the removal flights.