The following excerpts are from the upcoming book ” The American Citizens Handbook on Immigration” a candid conversation with a concerned citizen”available in September.
In United States immigration enforcement, “catch and release” refers to a practice of releasing a migrant to the community while he or she awaits hearings in immigration court, as an alternative to holding them in immigration detention.
Detention before removal is by far the most effective means to ensure that illegal immigrants comply with lawful deportation. At present, the Immigration Reform Law Institute estimates there are about 1.7 million individuals in the U.S. who are unlawfully present and have been ordered to leave the country.
Not surprisingly, none of them were in detention when they were ordered to leave. A common tactic to avoid deportation is just not showing up to be deported.
That problem is growing as migrants have adopted new tactics at the border to evade the enforcement of immigration laws. Recent migrant caravans of organized groups have popularized this as they seek to exploit loopholes in U.S. law.
Under U.S. law, the Department of Homeland Security has the authority to enforce expedited removal. If illegal border crossers are apprehended within 100 miles of the border and 14 days of entry, immigration officers can quickly deport them. This practice accounts for almost half of all deportations from the U.S.
But there is a catch. If groups are apprehended crossing the border that claim to be family and have children, and submit an asylum claim, they cannot be put into expedited removal. Knowing this to be true, such groups have sought asylum, leading to a dramatic spike in asylum claims.
These groups know that up to 90 percent of asylum claims are rejected, but merely filing an asylum claim can get them into the country to await a hearing. Then, when their claim is rejected, they often fail to show up and are never deported.
These groups are clearly taking advantage of this loophole. Homeland Security has even noted cases where human smugglers have assembled fake “families” and brought them across the border, then recycled the children, smuggling them back into Mexico to form new “families” to smuggle back into the U.S.
The number of bogus family asylum claims at the border is becoming overwhelming for border officials, leaving the Department of Homeland Security with little legal option other than to release them into the U.S. The fact is that more and more, smugglers see this tactic as successful and are increasing the practice.
There are only three ways at present to help stop this insanity. One is adding more border security (like walls) to limit the number of illegal crossings to begin with. The second is to create sufficient detention space to hold apprehended groups until their asylum claims can be resolved. The third is to close the legal loopholes that allow migrants to take advantage of asylum.
Here’s the problem, though: All of these solutions require the cooperation of Congress, and the president’s political opposition in Congress is adamant about opposing the president on all of these. In fact, part of its opposition is deny the crisis at the border even exists.
If the goal is open borders, then arguably there is not a crisis at the border. But if the objective is to end the flood of migrants at the border, which is both a security and humanitarian crisis, then Americans are going to have to insist Washington take action.
There are sensible, responsible, and fair solutions that would equitably address border security and all the other challenges facing our increasingly broken immigration system. Those solutions won’t arrive until Americans start to demand serious answers to these seemingly intractable problems.
Taken from “The Heritage for Foundation” March 19th article entitled “Trump administration is reverting to “ Catch and Release” .Congress is to blame-April 4, 2018
What you see:
Excerpts from “Here’s A Statistic You Won’t Hear From Trump: Over 90% Of Families Seeking Asylum Show Up For Their Court Hearings-BuzzFeed News September 11, 2018”
Despite the Trump administration’s assertion that immigrant families must be detained because they don’t show up for court hearings, research shows that the vast majority of families released from detention attend all their scheduled court appearances.
Overall, 86% of families released from immigration detention attended all of their court hearings, according to a study by the American Immigration Council that reviewed more than 18,000 immigration court hearings initiated between 2001 and 2016. That percentage exceeded 90% when only families who’d filed asylum applications were considered.
The Complete Story:
“Data from Center of Immigration Studies- A One-Sided Study on Detention of Illegal-Immigrant Families- September 14, 2018″
The statistical heart of the study — the so-called 90 percent appearance rate — just doesn’t stand up to scrutiny on a number of levels.
For starters, Department of Justice Executive Office for Immigration Review (DOJ EOIR) data referenced in the report have been selectively used to prove the AIC authors’ case. This is because the authors have chosen to look only at the percentage of those who were detained and released, which is not nearly the same as all those who arrived at the border. Many have been paroled immediately because they passed the “credible fear” test — a process fraught with fraud, loopholes, and procedural problems.
If one examines EOIR data, one sees that approximately half of those who are allowed to enter after credible fear approval do not even bother to file a formal application for asylum. Since 2006, 53 percent of all the completed cases that originated as “credible fear” claims did not result in an asylum application. This strongly suggests that many of these aliens may not ever have intended to pursue an asylum claim at all, but were instead taking advantage of our lenient policy to gain entry into the United States. Many, if not all, have simply disappeared into the larger illegally resident population. Yet these entrants who disappear complete haven’t been calculated into the authors’ statistics, probably because to use them would destroy the argument they are attempting to make: that aliens can be trusted if released.
Further, the EOIR data show that a large number of those who do submit asylum applications do not appear for their immigration court proceedings, notwithstanding the AIC authors’ claims to the contrary. The number of in absentia (“no-show”) removal orders for cases that initiated with approved “credible fear” claims has exploded in recent years— from 786 in 2009 to 8,999 in 2017.
Finally, only a small share of those who do bother to stick with their case all the way to completion are found to actually qualify for asylum. According to the immigration court statistics, since 2013 only 16 percent of all adults who were initially approved for “credible fear” claims were ultimately granted asylum by an immigration judge.
In sum, when you do the math, the reality is that only a small fraction are bona fide asylum seekers, and that may be a generous calculation, considering how many can successfully game the asylum criteria.
After the gathering of this information for the book mentioned above, there have been some significant changes in this arena. The current administration, due to the impasse in congress, has initiated a new protocol called “The Migrant Protection Protocal “
With some humanitarian and medical exceptions, DHS no longer release family units from Border Patrol Stations into the interior,” Kevin McAleenan said in a statement, calling it a “vital step in restoring the rule of law and integrity to our immigration system.”
Under the new procedures, if a family does not claim fear of return to their home country, they will be deported to that country. If the family does claim fear of return, they will be returned to Mexico under the Migrant Protection Protocols, a Trump administration policy that requires migrants to wait on the Mexican side of the border while the U.S. processes their claim.
The MPP policy reflects the administration key objective to suppress the amount of immigration along the U.S.-Mexico border. Shortly after the Migrant Protection Protocol was implemented, a new policy, The Third Country Asylum Rule, followed. This policy goes a step further and prohibits immigrants from applying for asylum in the United States if they have not applied for asylum in Mexico or another country that they have passed through (BBC World). The policy especially targets immigrants from Central America, including El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala who generally travel through Mexico before entering the United States.
Since the policy was first put in place, more than 57,000 asylum seekers have been turned away from the United States and forced to relocate in Mexico until their court date. (as of March 2020)
This entire segment has gotten completely out of hand. There is an extreme backlog of asylum claims, according to the Washington Office on Latin America, “more than 1 million claims with just over 400 judges”
It’s paramount that you go to your state listed in this post and contact your Senator and Congressperson that they are on notice. More important is that you find the representatives that back strong Immigration reform. americancitizenshandbook.com
Thank you for participating in this conversation. God Bless and Godspeed.