Biden Administration in the Clear to End MPP

August 9, 2022
Last modified: 
August 9, 2022

WASHINGTON— A federal court on Monday cleared the path for the Biden administration to end the Migrant Protection Protocols—also known as the “Remain in Mexico” program—by lifting an order that forced the administration to reinstate MPP and halted efforts to end a humanitarian and due process catastrophe.

The announcement follows the U.S. Supreme Court’s mandate to terminate MPP, which held that Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk of the Northern District of Texas did not have initial authority to issue an injunction blocking the termination of MPP and forcing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to revive and reimplement MPP in December of 2021.

Under the “Remain in Mexico” program, asylum seekers were murdered, raped, kidnapped, extorted, and compelled to live in squalid conditions. They also faced significant procedural barriers to meaningfully present their protection claims: migrants in MPP often failed to receive notice of their hearings, had little to no access to a lawyer in the United States, and were forced to travel through dangerous parts of Mexico in order to show up to the border to be transferred to courts for their hearings.

The following statement is from Kate Melloy Goettel, legal director of litigation at the American Immigration Council:

“Today, nearly a year after a single federal judge ordered the Biden administration to resume one of the most shameful immigration programs in modern history, the “Remain in Mexico” program is once again halted. Over 6,000 people have been sent into dangerous conditions in Mexico since December alone, putting their lives at risk and stripping away the fundamental right to safe access to the courts. Thousands more who were sent to Mexico under the Trump administration are still waiting for a chance at safety and protection.”

“We urge the Biden administration to move as quickly as possible to readmit all those who were sent to Mexico under both the reinstated Remain in Mexico program and the original program. Thousands of people are still waiting in Mexico for a fair shot at seeking asylum. Every day that we wait to bring them back is another day in which their lives and safety remain at risk. We look forward to working with the Biden administration to ensure that the renewed wind-down process runs smoothly and that no one falls through the cracks.”

“Although we applaud this legal victory, the situation remains precarious. Texas and Missouri have already filed a new request asking Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk to once again halt DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ well-reasoned decision to terminate the “Remain in Mexico” program. As litigation continues, we urge the court to recognize the humanity of those who are being put in harm’s way.”

The American Immigration Council has a range of research and other resources on the Migrant Protection Protocols, including experts available to speak on the fatal flaws in the lower court decisions, factual and legal recommendations on how to end the Migrant Protection Protocols in a second termination memorandum, and records about the implementation of the MPP program obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.





For more information, contact: 

Maria Frausto at the American Immigration Council, [email protected] or 202-507-7526.

Media Contact

Elyssa Pachico
[email protected]

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