CINCINNATI (WKRC) - In the latest move aimed at discouraging migrants from crossing the border illegally, the Biden administration has new restrictions on who can seek asylum. A local immigration lawyer says this is a betrayal of President Biden’s promise to rebuild the asylum system at the border.
“We have totally seen this ban before. This is basically the Trump transit ban. And while it might be represented to the public as a different thing, in its essence it is not,” said local immigration lawyer, Nazly Mamedova.
The ban means that those coming through another country to the United States need to apply for asylum in those countries, before they are eligible for asylum in the U.S.
Mamedova says this makes navigating the system and being granted asylum more difficult for those who don't speak the language of the countries they are seeking asylum from. It also makes it more difficult for individuals who aren't as tech savvy, which could prohibit the elderly population from navigating the system.
“We must ensure that access to asylum is easy for people because this is a human right,” Mamedova said.
The American Immigration Lawyers Association has come out against Biden's policy. Asylum is for people who are being persecuted by their government because of their race, nationality, or part of a social group and need protection. Mamedova said the system is already strict, including in Ohio, who denies the majority of asylum cases.
“When it comes to asylum, our immigration court in Cleveland denies the majority of the cases. They have like an 80% denial rate,” said Mamedova.
While a different political party presides over the country, experts say we are seeing a policy pop up again that seems all too familiar.
“And now trying to enact the same ban that Trump’s administration had. Obviously, they are working against their promises,” said Mamedova.
The deadline for comments on these regulations for the federal registry is March 27.