When Title 42 expires, the White House expects an “inflow” of migrants at the border.
The administration is preparing for such a scenario, according to White House comm. director Kate Bedingfield, who stated during a press conference that they anticipate a migrant influx once the ban is lifted and that the government is planning for it.
The order was implemented in March of 2020 by the Trump White House in response to COVID-19. According to Customs and Border Protection, border officials have returned more than 1.7 million migrants since the order started.
“This is a policy that we have long avoided making, because it’s under the jurisdiction of Title 42, which is a public health measure, not a migration enforcement measure. So when it comes to lifting Title 42, we defer to the U.S. CDC.” Bedingfield said.
“However, of course, we’re preparing for various scenarios, and we have every confidence that when the CDC decides it’s okay to lift Title 42, there will be a rush of people attempting to cross the border, so we’ve been doing a lot of planning for that possibility.”
She also made it clear that the DHS is preparing for the increase.
When asked about the last surge, Bedingfield replied that the administration had managed it and was ready to do so again in 2022.
“Well, I believe if you look at the spring… There was a push to swiftly move unaccompanied minors out of Border Patrol custody and into locations that were more suited for kids. We were able to significantly decrease those numbers; we were able to quickly send those kids out of Border Patrol custody and into the system as a result of our work with DHS, among others.”
“So, I believe if you look at what we were able to do last spring, there was a capacity to shift those numbers and move those kids into locations that were better suited to them.” she continued. “I’d refer back to the things that President Biden has done to rebuild what was, when we came in, a system devastated by the previous White House.”
According to CBS News, the CDC could announce its decision as early as this week. The order is expected to be officially terminated in May, according to The NY Times.