From Michael Hopkins, CEO
Jewish Family Service of San Diego (JFS) strongly supports the Biden-Harris administration’s plan for broadening the pool of migrants who will be allowed to enter the United States, who had been forcibly returned to Mexico under the Trump-era Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP or “Remain in Mexico” program. We applaud this latest move as an effort to rebuild our nation’s asylum system and to restore safe and humane processing at the southwest border.
JFS and our partners in the San Diego Rapid Response Network are preparing for the arrival of thousands of individuals whose cases were unjustly terminated or ordered removed in absentia while in the MPP program. Indeed, the MPP program denied protection and safety in the U.S. to over 70,000 asylum seekers and forced them into dangerous situations across the border.
Together, with protecting public health as our focus, we are moving forward and welcoming migrants enrolled in MPP into the U.S. so they can assert their legal right to asylum – fairly, humanely and without fear.
As of June 24, San Diego Rapid Response Network Migrant Shelter Services has assisted 2,606 asylum seekers from MPP into the U.S., providing respite shelter services, financial and travel assistance, and legal support.
JFS, as the operator of the SDRRN Migrant Shelter Services, continues to provide temporary shelter services and travel coordination to asylum seekers who arrive in San Diego, continuing to prioritize public health. We look forward to continuing to work with all levels of government to provide the resources and support needed to welcome people seeking asylum safely and expeditiously at our border.
Every day, we hear the horrific stories of persecution and violence that asylum seekers are fleeing – their stories drive our commitment to a more just system. Still, there is a lot of work to be done, including ending policies such as Title 42, which allows for the expulsion of vulnerable individuals at our border.
JFS also works alongside the 65-plus organizations of the California Welcoming Task Force in anticipation of policy changes and will continue to make public health the priority for our community, staff and asylum-seeking individuals.
Continuing to “Welcome the Stranger” is only possible with community support at www.rapidresponsesd.org. Visit www.jfssd.org for available job positions and in-person volunteer opportunities to support this work.