Recently the Trump administration has placed a limitation on who can apply for asylum. Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, anyone on US soil can apply for asylum, regardless of how they entered the country. In response to the migrant caravan heading towards the US, Trump has placed a strict limitations on who can qualify for asylum. Under the proposed regulations, only those who cross through a port of entry may apply for asylum, which is a drastic departure from traditional measures. While those who enter without inspection can still apply for withholding of removal under the convention against torture act, critics of the president’s plan hold this new proposal bars many eligible asylum seekers from their due process as withholding of removal is a much higher standard.
This has led to a suit from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on the basis that asylum seekers are being wrongfully denied the ability to apply for asylum. Recently, many of the ports of entry have been shut due to minimal staffing. This has caused delays leading to months for many eligible asylum seekers. A judge has heard arguments from both sides and will make a decision regarding the legality of the proposal, while noting no timeline of when he will make his decision. The migrants are fleeing violence and hard economic times. The Trump administration has previously limited asylum claims based on domestic violence, a rule under former attorney general Jeff Sessions. The ACLU is hoping to reach an injunction regarding the administration’s new proposal.