“... the Court concludes that the public interest would be served by a preliminary injunction preventing the termination of the CDC's Title 42 Orders.”
Louisiana U.S. District Judge Robert Summerhays ruling that public health order Title 42 must remain in place along the U.S. southern border during a lawsuit brought by 24 states against the U.S. government.
may 24, 2022
Why It Matters: This decision blocks the lifting of public health order Title 42 — a provision which allows the U.S. government to quickly expel people attempting entry along the U.S. southern border citing public health safety during a pandemic — while the lawsuit continues.
- Background: Last month, the CDC announced: "After considering current public health conditions and an increased availability of tools to fight COVID-19 ... an Order [Title 42] suspending the right to introduce migrants into the United States is no longer necessary." Republicans and Democrats have pushed back on this decision, raising concerns about whether CBP will be able to handle an expected surge of people attempting entry along the southern border once Title 42 is lifted, especially amid a year where CBP encounters of people attempting entry along the southern border are already on pace to surpass last year as the highest number of yearly encounters in modern data collection.
- Those in support of lifting Title 42 say the order is being used unfairly as immigration law; it was first instituted decades ago as a public health order to prevent disease spread. Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants' Rights Project, says: "Title 42 was never about public health, and the states are using this lawsuit simply to try and end asylum."
- In his decision, Judge Summerhays said the CDC did not follow the proper procedure to lift Title 42 at the southern border. He also wrote that the CDC did not consider the financial harm that an increase in crossings would have on the states which filed suit.
- What's next? Litigation continues as Title 42 remains in place along the southern border.
- The Justice Dept. announced it will appeal the decision, and White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre released a statement noting that the Biden admin disagrees with the ruling: "The authority to set public health policy nationally should rest with the Centers for Disease Control, not with a single district court. ... As the appeal proceeds, the Department of Homeland Security will continue planning for the eventual lifting of Title 42 in light of CDC's public health judgement, at which point anyone who attempts to enter the country unlawfully will be subject to Title 8 Expedited Removal proceedings, if they do not have grounds to remain in the United States."
Click HERE to read Judge Summerhays' decision
Judge: COVID asylum restrictions must continue on border (Associated Press)