Title 42 expiration means more court cases, influx of migrants coming to Queen City

Charlotte is home to the only immigration court in the Carolinas.
Organizations are preparing to assist a possible influx of migrants in Charlotte as Title 42 restrictions end.
Published: May. 11, 2023 at 10:29 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Title 42 officially lifts at 11:59 p.m. eastern standard time Thursday.

It means changes for thousands of migrants coming to the U.S.-Mexico border, hoping to see asylum.

Before Title 42, migrants could cross illegally, ask for asylum, and be let into the U.S. However, once the policy was put into place in 2020, they could be turned away.

Now, new, strict policies will crack down on illegal crossings. Those who cross illegally will not be allowed to return for five years and can face criminal prosecution.

Not only that, dropping Title 42 likely means an influx of migrants will be coming to Charlotte, in part because Charlotte has the only immigration court for both North and South Carolina.

With the current backlog of immigration court cases, over 74,000 cases are already pending.

Immigration attorneys expect Title 42′s termination to add thousands more cases to the list.

In turn, it may take years for new migrants to have their day in court. In the meantime, they have to find somewhere to stay.

That’s where our local organizations, like the Latin American Coalition and Camino come in, to help migrants find shelter and legal representation.

“Once we triage them into our facility, meeting their basic needs, we are within that 60 days connecting them to appropriate resources to get them assistance legally,” Dee John, the community outreach director at Camino, said.

Related: More than 70K immigrant cases backlogged, may worsen with Title 42 expiring