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April 9, 2021

18,663 Migrant Children Arrived at the Border in March
By Deanna Garcia

U.S. immigration courts are already backed up with more than 1.3 million cases and are not ready for a flood of asylum claims coming from migrants crossing the border, current and former immigration judges say. “The response to this usually is: ‘Hire more judges.’ And I think the response should be ‘Let’s be smarter about who we put into court and how we prioritize the cases and how we handle cases,” said Jeffrey Chase, a former immigration judge and senior legal adviser for the Board of Immigration Appeals. According to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, there were 1,299,239 active immigration cases pending, up from 542,411 at the beginning of 2017. There are only 529 immigration judges in 67 courts nationwide as of March 31.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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