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Judge says asylum-seekers should not wait in Mexico

The Trump administration suffered another setback in its campaign against asylum-seekers. This time it was a ruling of a judge who blocked the administration’s attempt to require asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico until the time of their hearing in the U.S. However, the judge did wait to implement the ruling until the government has a chance to appeal.

District Court Judge Richard Seeborg wrote a 27-page ruling stating the current law does not support the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to enact the plan called Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), which was first announced in December of 2018. The judge added that there was insufficient protection to those applying for asylum to be sent back to Mexico, or “places where they face undue risk to their lives and freedom.”

ACLU fights back

The ruling is in response to a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and other groups on behalf of 11 asylum-seekers from Central America.

A statement from the ACLU’s deputy director of its Immigrants’ Rights Project pointed out, "Try as it may, the Trump administration cannot simply ignore our laws to accomplish its goal of preventing people from seeking asylum in the United States."

The administration is not done yet

The ruling is a setback, but the Trump administration has pushed out DHS head Kirstjen Nielsen this week in efforts to find a new leader with a more aggressive approach. In light of this news, asylum-seekers and their families will need the guidance of immigration attorneys here in California now more than ever.

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  • American Immigration Lawyers Association
  • State Bar of California | California Board of Legal Specialization
  • Avvo
  • Orange County Bar Association
  • Irvine Chamber