Washington, DC – The U.S. Supreme Court today blocked the Biden Administration’s plan to end the Title 42 border policy, a temporary action that gives the Justices until February to decide whether states seeking to keep the policy in place have the legal standing to do so. In response to today’s decision, Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) President Wendy Young issued the following statement:
“As Title 42 remains in place and temperatures at the border hit record lows, children and families who are unable to seek U.S. protection have been put at further risk. This deeply disappointing decision runs counter to science, counter to commonsense, and counter to our nation’s most cherished ideals of protecting the most vulnerable, especially children. While the Administration has exempted unaccompanied children from Title 42, these children are still unable to present themselves for protection at ports of entry, denying them critical access to safety and putting them in the crosshairs of politicians who have made clear they will do whatever it takes to keep the borders closed to those protection. It is time to end this shameful practice.”
The Trump Administration instituted Title 42 by invoking the COVID-19 pandemic, a policy decision that has remained in place even though the border has opened for all other business. Independent public health experts have long made clear that the policy has never been guided by a legitimate public health rationale. KIND has worked with a number of children who have been rendered unaccompanied by Title 42. In some cases, their parents disappeared while waiting in danger in Mexico, and in other cases children felt that the only way they could survive was separating from parents and caregivers and risking their lives at the hands of smugglers. Children should not be forced to travel alone in search of protection by taking dangerous pathways in the hopes of being processed by U.S. border patrol. The organization cautions that today’s decision will prolong these horrific conditions and result in more separated children. KIND urges the Biden Administration to continue its work to dismantle this disastrous policy.
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