New program calls for curfews and GPS tracking for asylum-seeking families

El Paso, Texas – A new Biden administration policy requires migrant families seeking asylum to undergo curfews and GPS tracking while officials decide whether they can remain in the country or be deported, Immigration and Customs Enforcement ( ICE) announced on Wednesday.

The program, known as Family Expedited Removal Management, requires some adult migrants who illegally crossed the US-Mexico border with underage children to wear GPS ankle monitors and observe a curfew. The initiative applies to migrant families who fear returning to their home countries after being placed on an accelerated deportation procedure, known as accelerated deportation.

Officials said the policy is intended to allow ICE to monitor migrant families and locate them if asylum officials determine they are ineligible for U.S. protection without having to hold them in detention facilities — a controversial practice that the Biden Government does not want to revive. Immigrants seeking asylum in the United States wait to be processed by border police after entering Arizona from Mexico May 10, 2023 in Yuma, Arizona.

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Should families fail their interviews with US asylum officials, ICE will deport them within 30 days of their placement under the expedited deportation process, officials said Wednesday. Those deported under expedited deportation receive a five-year ban and could face criminal prosecution if they attempt to re-enter the United States

“Families shouldn’t listen to smugglers’ lies,” ICE chief official Corey Price said in a statement. “Like single adults, non-citizens traveling with their children who do not have legal residency in the United States will be expeditiously deported and barred from re-entry for at least five years.”

The initiative, announced Wednesday, will initially apply to migrant families traveling to areas near Baltimore, Chicago, Newark and Washington, an ICE official told CBS News.

The program is part of a larger effort by the Biden administration to bar migrants from entering the United States legally amid pandemic-era migration restrictions. known as Title 42will be set this week.

While the Biden administration’s strategy to prevent illegal border crossings includes a significant expansion of opportunities for migrants to enter the country with legal permission, including via a phone appIt is also expected to bet heavily on increased deportations and a comprehensive curtailment of asylum.

the restriction published on Wednesdaywill bar migrants who have entered the country without permission from the asylum process if they have not first sought protection in a third country, such as Mexico, en route to the US southern border. The policy, which resembles a Trump-era rule, is expected to be challenged in court by migrant advocates.

Migrants subject to this regulation face deportation and deportation from the United States under the expedited deportation process unless they pass questioning by U.S. asylum officials, who have been instructed to use a higher, more difficult threshold when reviewing these cases apply.

Officials plan to hold adult asylum-seekers in border protection facilities, while asylum officials effectively decide whether they should be deported under the regulation or allowed to apply for asylum before a judge.

But the administration can’t do the same for families with children due to legal restrictions on the incarceration of minors, widespread Democrat opposition to incarceration of family members, and insufficient sleeping space at the two Texas prisons that previously held parents and children in ICE custody.

The lockdown and surveillance program announced Wednesday is in many ways an attempt to stop migrant families from illegally crossing the southern border without reinstating family detention, which the Biden administration abolished in 2021.

Administration officials considered the possibility of incarcerating migrant families earlier this year, but the proposal was shelved due to strong opposition from some Biden officials, Democratic lawmakers and advocates who cited studies showing incarceration can inflict psychological trauma on children.

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