New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice Condemns Biden’s Executive Order on Asylum as “Betrayal of Trust”

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Copy Edited By Adam Rizvi, The India Observer, TIO: Newark, NJ (June 4, 2024) – The New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice (NJAIJ), the state’s largest immigration coalition, has forcefully condemned President Biden’s recent Executive Order to halt asylum at the southern border. Describing the move as a reprehensible misuse of power and a violation of the internationally recognized human right to seek asylum, NJAIJ has criticized the administration for reversing its stance on immigration. 

President Biden’s decision, which comes shortly after a similar proposal failed in the Senate, invokes Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). This measure allows the administration to turn away adults and families with children, including many asylum seekers, who cross the southern border between official ports of entry once an arbitrary daily limit has been reached.

“Today is Primary Day in New Jersey, and after months of relentless campaigning to appeal to our communities, this Executive Order is a betrayal of trust for voters who have been sold empty promises about defending basic values and principles of our country,” said Amy Torres, Executive Director of NJAIJ. “New Jersey is one of the top five states where naturalized immigrants are eligible to vote and nearly one in four of our residents is foreign-born. We are outraged not only by the blatant cruelty of this new policy but by the complete reversal of values by the Biden Administration. When previous administrations attempted such reprehensible measures, they were rightly called racist and a misuse of power. Those labels apply just as truly today to President Biden’s announcement.”

The NJAIJ draws parallels between the current administration’s use of Section 212(f) and its previous exploitation by the Trump Administration. Trump’s policies, which included blocking refugees from African and Muslim-majority countries and suspending the entry of asylum seekers crossing between U.S. ports of entry, were deemed unlawful by federal courts and were heavily criticized by then-presidential candidate Biden.

The NJAIJ asserts that President Biden’s decision marks a dangerous regression at a time when numerous other issues within the immigration system, such as the appointment of judges, case backlogs, and pathways to citizenship, remain unresolved. The coalition argues that stricter enforcement has not proven to be an effective deterrent to people seeking safety in the United States. Instead, such measures have often led to more dangerous passage routes, increasing the risks for unaccompanied minors and exploitation by traffickers.

NJAIJ calls on U.S. Senators and Members of Congress to denounce this policy, echoing their previous stance against similar measures five years ago, affirming that immigration bans are contrary to national values. The coalition pledges to continue advocating for policies that empower and protect immigrants.

New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice

Non-profit Organization


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