On Monday, March 27, Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) submitted comments in response to the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking titled “Circumvention of Lawful Pathways.” CCUSA opposes the proposed rule because it creates additional barriers for people fleeing harm to exercise their legal right to request life-saving protections in the United States. Furthermore, CCUSA opposes the proposal as it will increase migrants’ vulnerability to smuggling, trafficking and other forms of exploitation — the very types of dangers they are escaping.
This proposed rule, if implemented, would not only violate U.S. law but also interfere with our moral obligation to protect vulnerable people and uphold their dignity. CCUSA recognizes our government’s duty to regulate our nation’s borders in a humane and orderly manner. We also call on Congress to take up and pass meaningful comprehensive immigration reform legislation to respond to the migration trends and growing challenges at our southern border. However, until that happens, we urge the administration to create pathways to allow people to exercise their legal right to request asylum in a humane and orderly way. As the administration prepares to end Title 42 enforcement, CCUSA calls for a process that will prioritize the safety of migrants and asylum seekers, as well as the officials who will process them.