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What the ending of Title 42 means for migrants in Florida

Posted at 6:01 PM, May 11, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-11 18:51:40-04

It’s a measure known by many.  

Since its inception in 2020, according to US Customs and Border Patrol, agents have turned away migrants at just our southwest borders more than 2.7 million times.  

It was under the claim of Title 42, a pandemic-era immigration law aimed at stopping health risks from coming into the US from other countries.  

“Anyone who has already entered the United States will not be impacted,” shared Renata Castro. “Those who are entering the United States or on their way to entering, those will be the individuals most likely impacted by these changes.”  

Castro is an Immigration Attorney from South Florida.  

She explained moving forward, things will be business as before, now under the regulations of Title 8. It was the law that was in place prior to 2020.  

Instead of being turned away for the betterment of public health, a migrant will now schedule an appointment date, come to our border, and ask for asylum protection. Migrants are then vetted through what is called a ‘Credible Fear Interview’ before being able to petition to remain in the US.  

What Castro believes we can see is more people being turned away, but only because immigration authorities will become stricter as more migrants are anticipated at ports of entry.  

“In states like California, you probably have a state average of approvals of about 45-50% of asylum petitions in immigration courts. In the state of Florida, the average denial rate is over 85%,” stated Castro.  

The Department of Homeland Security stated Wednesday that Title 42 lifts Thursday night.  

They made it clear, stating:  

“Individuals who cross into the United States at the Southwest Border without authorization or without having used a lawful pathway, and without having scheduled a time to arrive at a port of entry, will be presumed ineligible for asylum, absent an applicable exception. If removed, they will be barred from re-entry for at least five years and subject to potential criminal prosecution for repeated attempts to enter unlawfully.”  

DHS also stated migrants must try and claim asylum in other countries before making their way to the US. If not, they could be turned away.  

The only country this does not apply to is Mexico.

In Florida, on Wednesday, Governor Ron DeSantis signed a new immigration bill into law.

It included tougher penalties for those who knowingly hire or transport undocumented in the state. The Governor said it’s Florida’s job to combat ‘Biden’s Border Crisis.’  

DeSantis stated, “Where is this president’s energy? Where is his vigor? Where is his commitment to the cause? He’s just sitting around doing nothing.”  

However, the White House shared this statement in response:  

“We’re stepping up enforcement to quickly and humanely remove individuals who try to enter the United States unlawfully.  Governor Desantis wants to fly them and their children to cities up north with no sense of where they are going or why.  The governor isn’t interested in solving this problem.  He just wants to make it worse by pulling political stunts.”   

Meanwhile, at the start of this year, Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced a new policy where migrants from Nicaragua, Cuba, Venezuela, and Haiti would be able to enter the US if they had an eligible sponsor because of the political unrest in those countries.  

That is still ongoing, accepting 30 thousand migrants a month.