Legal experts call Title 42 use illegal, ineffective and dangerous
Prior to March 2020, the U.S. had never invoked Title 42, which grants federal authorities the power to deny entry into the U.S. to prevent the spread of communicable diseases.
Since then, officials have used it more than 2.5 million times to send away asylum seekers and migrants.
Now, two legal experts say enough is enough.
The authors of the paper in JAMA Forum say Title 42 is illegal under both U.S. and international law, which require that asylum seekers receive a hearing on their claim.
They add that the current use of Title 42 is not supported by medical evidence; citing CDC scientists’ objection to the measure, lack of evidence of its efficacy and examples of the many ways it can cause harm, they says its continued, politically motivated use threatens the legitimacy of public health powers and public trust in them.
They suggest future such measures rely on scientific evidence and require regular review.
Although the Biden administration has said it would end the use of Title 42 and has begun implementing a phone app as a stopgap for asylum petitions, the Supreme Court has ordered its continuation pending review.