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Boundless Immigration News Weekly Archive: April 22, 2022

A weekly roundup of need-to-know immigration stories

Apr 22, 2022

An American flag

Critics Slam Texas Plan to Bus Asylum Seekers to D.C.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced last week a controversial policy to bus people legally in the U.S. seeking asylum from Texas to Washington, D.C. at taxpayers’ expense.

Abbott said the policy will raise awareness about issues at the U.S.-Mexico border as the Biden administration seeks to end Title 42.

Critics of Abbott’s plan, including the White House, have called the policy a political stunt, while U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Chris Magnus has slammed the policy as interfering with the ability of CBP to do its job and failing to properly communicate with the agency or the impacted border communities.

Texas Governor’s Border Inspection Policy Cost Nearly $9 Billion

In another action designed to raise the ire of the White House, Gov. Abbott on April 6 also ordered Texas state police and members of the National Guard to begin conducting second inspections of trucks entering the U.S. from Mexico, after the trucks had already been cleared by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol.

Following intense backlash from members of both parties, truckers, and trade associations due to massive delays, Gov. Abbott rolled back the policy on April 15.

Industry and economic analysts estimate that the policy cost the U.S. nearly $9 billion – an estimated $8.967 billion in gross domestic product (GDP), with a nearly $4.25 billion loss in GDP in Texas alone.

Biden Administration Grants Cameroon Temporary Protected Status

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced this week that it had designated Cameroon for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). The move could protect as many as 40,000 Cameroonians and marks the first time the country has been designated.

Immigration advocacy organizations have been lobbying for Cameroon’s TPS designation for over a year, citing the country’s increasing political instability and violent conflicts between government officials, armed separatists, and terrorist groups such as Boko Haram.

With the new designation, nationals of Cameroon present in the U.S. as of April 14, 2022 are now able to apply for temporary work authorization and remain in the country without risk of deportation for 18 months. Beyond the 18-month duration, TPS status does not currently provide a pathway to permanent residency or citizenship.

Syrian Immigrant Hailed as Hero for Helping Catch New York Subway Gunman

A Syrian immigrant helped law enforcement catch the person who shot and injured over 10 individuals on a Brooklyn, NY subway last week. Zack Tahhan is being praised as a hero after spotting the shooter on the street and alerting police officers.

Tahhan told reporters he was installing security cameras at a shop in the East Village when he identified shooter Frank James through one of the security cameras. He said he ran after the suspect before flagging down a police car, which led to James’ arrest. Tahhan has been hailed as a hero, and the hashtag #ThankYouZack trended on social media following the arrest.

Overcrowding and Extreme Temperatures at Arizona Detention Center

A new report found that U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) violated federal health and safety standards at an immigration detention center in Arizona. The agency’s inspector general found that migrant detainees at the facility in question were held in overcrowded conditions and subjected to extreme temperatures.

According to the report, the CBP met detention standards for women, children, and families at various facilities near Yuma, Arizona. But in one facility, adult men were housed in overflow military tents that exceeded temperatures of 95 degrees.

The inspector general recommended better data collection efforts, including keeping a record of which men had undergone medical screenings and received basic hygiene supplies.

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