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US moves to cut backlog of asylum cases at US-Mexico border

The Biden administration is proposing changing how asylum claims are handled. AP photo.
Posted at 12:21 PM, Aug 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-18 15:21:14-04

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is proposing changing how asylum claims are handled.

The aim is to reduce the backlog of cases from the U.S.-Mexico border that's left people waiting years to find out whether they'll be allowed to stay in America. Under the proposal, routine asylum cases no longer would automatically be referred to the overwhelmed immigration court system managed by the Justice Department. Instead, they'd be handled by asylum officers from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

That's seen as a way to help people with legitimate claims for protection while allowing officials to more quickly deal with people who don't qualify for asylum or are taking advantage of the long delay to stay in the United States.