By Rhina Guidos | Catholic News Service
WASHINGTON (CNS) — The chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration June 24 hailed a Supreme Court decision dismissing a lawsuit challenging a Trump-era immigration policy that kept asylum-seekers in Mexico, while he urged the end of another policy that keeps migrants out of the U.S.
The high court said the Migration Protection Protocols, or MPP policy, was no longer in dispute. The Biden administration did away with it earlier in June and had earlier asked for the dismissal of the suit.
MPP, also known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy, forced asylum-seekers at the southern border to stay on the other side of the border until it was time for applicants to have their cases adjudicated in U.S. immigration courts.
The Biden administration formally ended the policy June 1, allowing applicants with open cases to enter the U.S., although officials had called a halt to the practice Jan. 20, Inauguration Day.
“We welcome the final resolution of this case. At the same time, the court’s decision should not be seen as legal vindication of MPP, which remains contrary to our laws and morals,” Auxiliary Bishop Mario E. Dorsonville of Washington, chairman of the USCCB’s migration committee, said in a June 24 statement. “Going forward, we must work as a nation to welcome the newcomer and respond to those in need with Christ-like compassion.”
Bishop Dorsonville also urged “ending the misuse of Title 42,” a policy the Trump administration implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic instructing Border Patrol agents to expel anyone caught trying to enter the U.S. instead of processing them under existing immigration law.
Under the Biden administration, it has remained in place.
Bishop Dorsonville said there’s a need to address the root causes of migration, and to reform “our bogged down immigration system.”
“It is possible to do these things while respecting the rule of law; we need only commit ourselves to the task,” he said.