Inhumane Venezuelan Policy

Immigrant Rights

Statement On New DHS “Migrant Enforcement Process” for Venezuelan Migrants to the United States

Lawyers for Civil Rights Objects to Arbitrary and Inhumane Venezuelan Policy

On October 12, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced a new “Migrant Enforcement Process” for Venezuelan migrants to the United States. The process, which went into immediate effect, implements two major and problematic policy changes. 

First, it creates an application process for “up to 24,000” Venezuelan migrants to enter the United States by air to an interior port of entry – a number that pales in comparison to the number of Ukrainian migrants being allowed entry under a similar policy. To be approved, a Venezuelan applicant must, among other things, have a financial supporter on U.S. soil. 

Second, any Venezuelan migrant who attempts to enter the United States between ports of entry will now be: (1) returned to Mexico under the Trump-era Title 42 policy; and (2) made ineligible to apply for legal entry through the newly established process. 

Lawyers for Civil Rights, the organization representing the Martha’s Vineyard migrants, vehemently objects to these changes. They are inhumane, arbitrary, and only serve to exacerbate the humanitarian crisis at the southern border. Much like the Trump administration’s child separation policy, this program is punitive to the point of cruelty. Migrants fleeing economic and political instability in Venezuela have no reason to know the consequences they will face merely by entering the United States between ports of entry, and those who have lawful asylum claims will be returned to Mexico before being afforded the opportunity to make those claims. In its haste to appear responsive to political attacks on immigration, the administration is interfering with Venezuelan migrants’ rights to seek immigration protection and relief in this country and adding further chaos and confusion to an already broken immigration system.