On the one-year-anniversary of the implementation of the Trump administration’s Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), Centro Legal de la Raza calls on Congress to defund MPP and end this inhumane policy. 

Through MPP, the  Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has turned away more than 60,000 asylum seekers and forced them to remain in Mexico to wait for their U.S. immigration proceedings since the protocol was put into effect a year ago. This policy deliberately requires asylum seekers to spend months, or even years in limbo, at the border in precarious, dangerous conditions. Asylum seekers  in MPP immigration proceedings have been subjected to extortion, physical attacks, sexual violence, human trafficking, and kidnapping by cartels and Mexican authorities

MPP not only puts migrants in great danger, it also effectively prevents people fighting immigration cases from accessing legal representation and basic information about their cases. According to reports, only 69 of 8,009 MPP-affected people in immigration proceedings in the El Paso court had attorneys. Less than 0.1% of those seeking asylum or another form of protection in the United States have won their cases in MPP immigration court proceedings. 

Centro Legal de la Raza has emerged as one of the leaders involved in litigation, representation and legal services provision for those affected by MPP. Lisa Knox, a managing attorney at Centro Legal de la Raza has represented a number of immigrants affected by MPP. “We have witnessed firsthand the multitude of ways in which MPP has stripped immigrants of their rights to safety, dignity and due process. Policies like MPP are part of the Trump administration’s larger war on immigrants of color,” said Knox.

 Centro Legal de la Raza denounces the manufactured human rights crisis created at the U.S.-Mexico border by the current Administration, and calls on Congress to act and end the MPP program.