In July 2019, the Trump administration enacted a new rule that requires asylum-seekers at the U.S. southern border to apply for—and be denied—asylum in a country through which they traveled en route to the U.S. Migrants that do not fulfill this requirement cannot be eligible to ask for asylum protections in the U.S. This rule effectively bars most Central American migrants - as well as migrants from dozens of other countries and continents - from seeking asylum in the U.S.
Additionally, news reports have continued to circulate about horrific conditions in Border Patrol holding facilities along the southern border, in some cases causing deaths of both children and adults. These claims were confirmed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General in a report released in July. Soon after, DHS unveiled new regulations that would end the "Flores Agreement," which protects immigrant children and families from prolonged detention.
Blocking vulnerable people from accessing protection is immoral, cruel, and unnecessary, as is detaining them for prolonged periods in crowded, unsanitary, and inhumane detention conditions.
In Deuteronomy 10:19, and in many other places in Scripture, we are reminded that, “You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” Extending hospitality is a calling for all those who follow Jesus, which includes defending the safety and dignity of those who are most vulnerable and away from home.
Urge your Members of Congress to protect asylum-seekers and access to asylum!
Photo from Time Magazine