Over 100 organizations signed a letter to Members of Congress urging them to reject any proposed extension to Title 42. The CDC terminated the order in early April stating that “current public health conditions and an increased availability of tools to fight COVID-19,” means that, “suspending the right to introduce migrants into the United States is no longer necessary.”
April 26, 2022
Dear Members of Congress,
We write to urge you to oppose any extension of restrictions on asylum seekers under the Title 42 policy. As advocates for an equitable health system, we believe that blocking migrants from presenting their lawful cases for asylum has no beneficial health impact for our nation.
Title 42 has been in place since March of 2020 and extended numerous times since then. However, given the lack of evidence for its public health justification, its continuation has become untenable. Therefore, on April 1st, 2022, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) terminated the order, stating that “current public health conditions and an increased availability of tools to fight COVID-19,” means that, “suspending the right to introduce migrants into the United States is no longer necessary.”
Title 42 has never had a clear connection to addressing the spread of COVID-19. For months, experts such as in the New England Journal of Medicine and Health Affairs, as well as United Nations High Commissioners for Refugees and Doctors Without Borders have continued to state that there is no public health justification for Title 42. A group of over 1,300 doctors called it “junk science with no grounding in evidence.” Public health leaders at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University stated that Title 42, “exploits the COVID-19 pandemic to expel or block from the country people seeking asylum.” Immigrants have been essential in combatting the COVID-19 crisis making up roughly 1 in 5 essential workers, 1 in 5 health care workers and 1 in 4 long-term care workers. Immigrnats make important contributions to our national economy, while continuing to face systemic barriers to health insurance and health care services.
Congress should address this pandemic by expanding access to vaccines and preventative measures, not by furthering anti-immigrant policies. Yet some are blocking funding to fight the virus while proposing totie Title 42 to the Public Health Emergency (PHE). Ending the PHE is expected to result in over 12 million Medicaid beneficiaries losing coverage, and tying Title 42 to it pits health needs against border policies. PHEs have a particular purpose: to create flexibility and certainty for providers, issuers, and patients so the health care system can meet the country’s needs. Especially given doctors, hospitals, community health centers and others face a sudden lapse of resources to fight the pandemic, it is not time to tie the hands of the Department of Health and Human Services.
Due to the lack of public health justifications, we ask that you oppose any bills or amendments that restrict the ability of the CDC to end the harmful Title 42 policy. If the nation desires a robust and healthy debate about immigration reforms, it should be considered within its own context, not entangled with urgently needed COVID-19 funding.
See Attach Letter for Signatories
The Latest from the League
LWVUS joins in urging the US House and Senate in support of ending Title 42, which has rendered our southern border and ports of entry virtually closed to asylum seekers and refugees.