Local organizations prepare for migrants after 'Remain in Mexico' policy reinstated
Starting Monday, migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. along the southern border will have to wait up to six months in Mexico after the Biden administration announced it’s reinstating the Migrant Protection Protocols.
Gaby Zavala, director of the Migrant Resource Center in Matamoros, says her staff is getting ready for what's to come.
"So we are going to have again, a large influx of immigrants rushing to the Matamoros area,” Zavala said.
Even though the Biden administration is against MPP, also known as the Remain in Mexico policy, a district judge in Amarillo ordered the government to reinstate it.
"What the court gave the government is time to make sure that they implement it,” said immigration attorney Ana Maria Sardi.
All migrants will be vaccinated against COVID-19 and the U.S. will complete asylum cases within six months.
If the migrant is afraid of waiting in Mexico, they will be able to get an attorney within 24 hours.
Central American migrants will be returned to wait in Mexico and migrants asking for asylum in Matamoros and Nuevo Laredo will be sent to the interior of Mexico to wait for their court date.
Zavala says that could cause problems.
"Just imagine finding a safe space and having somebody come in and tell you, 'You need to move,'" Zavala said. "It's very difficult."
Migrants will also have the option to meet with their attorneys virtually while in Mexico.
Throughout next week, several local organizations will be meeting with each other in order to create a plan on where to house migrants while they wait for their day in immigration court.