News & Resources

IRAP Responds to Title 42 Termination Announcement


April 1, 2022


Spencer Tilger



(New York, NY) – Today, the Biden administration announced it will terminate Title 42 on May 23, 2022. Title 42 is a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) policy that for more than two years has been used to expel migrants from the U.S.-Mexico border and deny them their legal right to seek asylum in the United States. In a statement, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas clarified that “Title 42 remains in place until May 23 and, until then, DHS will continue to expel single adults and families encountered at the Southwest border.” This is despite advocates having documented nearly ten thousand cases of violence and extortion against migrants subjected to Title 42. 

Since the policy was first implemented in 2020, the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) has assisted hundreds of migrants in vulnerable situations apply for Title 42 exemptions through its U.S.-Mexico Border Program.

The following is a quote from Jennifer Babaie, U.S.-Mexico Border Program Director at IRAP:

“Today’s announcement is a key first step toward fully restoring access to asylum at the U.S. border for all people fleeing violence and persecution. Rather than wait until May 23, the administration should act quickly to end Title 42 and begin coordinating with local service providers immediately to expand processing capacity without relying on equally inhumane policies like Remain in Mexico, metering, or mass detention. 

Title 42 has never been about protecting public health, but is instead an illegal and xenophobic attack on migrant rights that the Biden administration is right to end. The policy has amounted to a de facto asylum ban at the U.S.-Mexico border that has disproportionately impacted the ability of Black, Indigenous, and LGBTQIA people to find lasting refuge. IRAP calls on the administration to commit to never again misusing public health measures to restrict or deny the right to seek asylum.

Service providers, local communities, and the American public are ready and willing to welcome and support asylum seekers. The response of neighboring countries to people fleeing the war in Ukraine has shown that it is possible to quickly and humanely welcome displaced people in need of safety, and the U.S. has an opportunity to model the same principles at its own borders.” 

Additional Information

Read IRAP’s amicus brief opposing Title 42: HERE

Read the Welcome With Dignity coalition’s recommendations to restart asylum at the border: HERE