WASHINGTON — After conducting its latest 60-day review of Title 42, the Centers for Disease Control announced today that it will no longer expel people under the policy beginning May 23.
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trump administration put into effect longer-standing plans to use Title 42, an obscure provision of U.S. health law, to shut down the border. The policy was continued under the Biden administration. Under the guise of public health, the policy has unlawfully stripped people fleeing danger of the right to seek asylum by expelling them without any due process.
The American Civil Liberties Union and partners challenged Title 42 from the start.
“We welcome the CDC’s long overdue decision to terminate this order, and look forward to the permanent end to this Trump era policy, which the Biden administration has disturbingly used to harm well over a million people, especially people of color,” said Shaw Drake, Staff Attorney and Policy Counsel for Border and Immigrants’ Rights at the ACLU of Texas. “All people have the right to seek protection in the United States from violence and danger, and everyone deserves for their claims to be heard. Expulsions under Title 42 were never based on public health — they were simply an excuse to deny those facing danger access to protection in this country.”
The CDC first issued the policy in March 2020 under reported political pressure. Public health experts have consistently found the policy is not based in public health.
“We welcome this development, but a substantial rollback of expulsions can and should begin immediately so that more lives are not shattered in the interim,” said Lee Gelernt, lead litigator in the ACLU’s Title 42 legal challenge. “Using the public health laws as a substitute for immigration policy was never justified and the courts have rightly said so."