The Administration announced an extension of the air and public transit mask mandate and the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency
Following these public health decisions, Sinema called on the Administration to keep the Title 42 Public Health Order in place to protect Arizona communities and migrants until ready with a firm, workable plan
WASHINGTON – Following the Administration’s decision to extend the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency and federal transportation mask mandate, Sinema continued her calls for the Administration to also delay lifting the Title 42 Public Health Order until prepared with a firm, workable plan to protect Arizona communities and migrants.
“The Administration’s extension of public health emergency authorities proves the need to delay lifting Title 42 to protect the health and safety of Arizona communities and migrants. I’ll keep pushing for transparency and accountability from the Administration to help secure the border, keep Arizona communities safe, and ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely,” said Sinema, Chair of the Border Management Subcommittee.
Last week, Sinema, Republican Senator James Lankford (Okla.) and a bipartisan group of Senators introduced legislation ensuring the Administration coordinates and communicates with border communities and puts a comprehensive, workable plan in place before lifting Title 42. The bill specifically prevents the Administration from ending the Title 42 emergency authority until at least 60 days after ending the COVID-19 national emergency declaration. After the end of the national emergency, the Department of Homeland Security would have thirty days to submit to Congress a plan to address the impacts of the post-Title 42 migrant influx.
Last week, Sinema spoke with U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to discuss the Administration’s Title 42 contingency plans. Sinema underscored how Arizona communities and migrants could be harmed if a Title 42 end is not accompanied by proper planning, coordination, and resources. Sinema also raised concerns she heard from her recent virtual border roundtable with federal and non-governmental partners in Arizona, and other conversations she has had with Arizona DHS officials. Sinema called for DHS to launch an intergovernmental coordination effort to ensure communication between federal, state, local, and non-governmental partners to strengthen cooperation. Secretary Mayorkas agreed to move forward with that strategy across the country.
Recently, Sinema sent a letter to President Biden expressing concerns that an abrupt end to Title 42 enforcement without a comprehensive response plan in place could harm Arizona communities and migrants and greatly increase the strain on the Department of Homeland Security, and local nonprofits that are already near or at capacity due to the current border crisis. Sinema’s letter states that Title 42 authority should not be used indefinitely, but points out that migrants and Arizona communities could be harmed if an ending to Title 42 is not accompanied by proper planning, coordination, and resources.
Last June, Sinema asked Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to proactively create a comprehensive plan in advance of an end to Title 42 and requested to be briefed on this plan. In their most recent letter, the senators say they have not seen evidence that DHS has developed and implemented a sufficient plan. Recently, Sinema secured critical federal funding to help Arizona manage the current migrant crisis, improve border security, and keep Arizona communities safe.