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Date: Wntr 2021
From: Georgetown Immigration Law Journal(Vol. 35, Issue 2)
Publisher: Georgetown University Law Center
Document Type: Article
Length: 20,898 words
Lexile Measure: 1990L

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Abstract :

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued an Order on March 26, 2020, under Title 42, Section 265 of the Public Health Service Act, in the name of combatting the spread of coronavirus. The Order has been called the "Asylum Ban" because it effectively has sealed the southern border to protection-seekers, resulting in the pushback of nearly 400,000 asylees and unaccompanied children. This Article argues that the Trump administration has contravened the rule of law by using the coronavirus pandemic as a convenient pretext to end asylum in the U.S., and by violating the rights of protection-seekers. In doing so, this Article makes four unique contributions, it: 1) provides a detailed account of the coronavirus-related travel restrictions and how they have imposed a wholesale ban on asylum in the United States; 2) contextualizes this harm within the Administration's project to curtail protections for vulnerable persons fleeing persecution and torture; 3) challenges the proffered health justifications for the Asylum Ban as pandemic pretext; and 4) establishes that such measures violate the U.S.'s non-refoulement obligation by preventing all meaningful access to asylum. While the CDC order is a temporary measure, born of the coronavirus pandemic and the U.S. government's response to it, the concerns raised in this Article extend beyond this current political moment to the long-term implications of leveraging national laws and pretextual health concerns to close the U.S. border to protection-seekers.

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A675726313