TIJUANA, MEXICO - MARCH 22: A person (R) collects donations as people walk in line to the San Ysidro Port of Entry on their way to cross the southern border into the United States on March 22, 2022 in Tijuana, Mexico.
March 21 marked the two-year ann WASHINGTON (AP) - The Centers for Disease Control announced Friday that it is ending a policy that limited asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border to prevent the spread of COVID-19.The use of public health powers had been widely criticized by Democrats and immigration advocates as an excuse for the United States to shirk its obligations to provide haven to people fleeing persecution.
The policy went into effect under President Donald Trump in March 2020. Since then, migrants trying to enter the U.S. have been expelled more than 1.7 million times.The policy, known as the Title 42 authority, named for a 1944 public health law to prevent communicable disease, will end on paper, but it will not take effect until May 23, to allow border officials time to prepare.
The Associated Press first reported the change earlier this week.The policy was increasingly hard to justify scientifically as restrictions ended across the U.S.The federal order says efforts by the Department of Homeland Security to provide vaccines to migrants at the border will step up in the next two months."After considering current public health conditions and an increased availability of tools to fight COVID-19 (such as highly effective vaccines and therapeutics), the CDC director has determined that an order suspending the right to introduce migrants into the United States is no longer necessary," the CDC said in a statement.The decision is expected to draw more migrants to the U.S.-Mexico border.