Calling for Deportation Pause Amid COVID-19 Outbreak is Reckless Public Policy



Open borders advocates are calling for an end to ‘all deportations’ in order to better protect detainees during the COVID-19 outbreak. Ironically, the move does little to benefit this group. 

Simply put, halting deportations presents many issues for detained migrants.

Each migrant set for deportation has already had due process and has a final order of removal. This means that the U.S. government has decided they cannot remain in the country anymore. 

Going against these orders would not only undermine our nation’s judicial system, but would also bring serious repercussions for migrants.

Detention space and resources—ranging from medical supplies to food— are finite. A reasonable argument can be made that if deportations are halted entirely, conditions in these facilities will worsen for migrants due to overcrowding. Detention facilities are built under the assumption that detainees are entering and leaving at constant rates. If no one leaves these facilities, the likelihood of a migrant experiencing worse conditions increases significantly as the demand for resources exceeds the supply. This is far from what open borders advocates or anyone wants.

Releasing migrants from immigration detention has been a top priority for the open borders lobby amid the COVID-19 outbreak. But yet, now that the U.S. wants to release these migrants back to their home countries, they protest. Oh, the hypocrisy.

The hypocrisy doesn’t end there though. Open borders advocates commonly assert that sending deportees to their country of origin increases the chances of spreading COVID-19 to their own people. Interestingly, these are the same open borders advocates who objected to us sealing our borders in order to prevent people from other countries spreading the virus here.

And it is important to note that before migrants are deported to their country of origin, they are meticulously screened for diseases and are not sent back if they show symptoms of COVID-19. 

Halting deportations amid the COVID-19 outbreak is simply bad public policy. It does little to protect detainees and reveals the hypocrisy and unachievable agenda of the open borders lobby.

About Author

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Matthew joined FAIR in 2018 as FAIR’s communications specialist. Matthew is a primary media contact for the organization and assists with all of the organization’s communication activities. He brings previous experience in government research, writing, and communications. Before joining FAIR, Matthew worked in the Wisconsin State Senate as well as a Wisconsin political non-profit. Matthew holds a B.A. in Political Science and International Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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