Today, Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) released recommendations for managing migration at the border.
In his plan titled “Securing Our Borders By Managing Migration and Refugees in the Americas,” he offers a series of thoughtful executive branch policies including four key areas:
Creating new legal pathways and expanding existing pathways to reduce pressure at the southern border;
Increasing resources at the border to process asylum seekers and expediting removal proceedings for those without legal claims to stay in the U.S.;
Expanding humanitarian assistance and developing financing to better integrate migrants and refugees in countries across the Americas; and
Elevating efforts to counter transnational criminal organizations involved in human trafficking and smuggling.
The following statement is from Aaron Reichlin-Melnick, Director of Policy at the American Immigration Council:
“This set of recommendations includes many smart suggestions to begin addressing the long-term issues we are facing in the region and at the border, including ensuring access to legal counsel for migrants, expanding Temporary Protected Status (TPS), and expanding legal pathways. However, the emphasis on expedited removal and accelerated processing is not the solution we need at this time. Any proposal that emphasizes or expands expedited removal proceedings prior to substantive reforms will undoubtedly restrict meaningful access to both legal representation and asylum, especially for people of color and those with language barriers. Still, Senator Menendez’ plan is a powerful starting point for reasoned discussion and debate grounded in humane and effective solutions. Let’s work together to build immigration policy that matches the American values we stand for as a nation