WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. border authorities stopped migrants more often on the southern border for a fourth straight month in May, unaffected by expectations that pandemic-era limits on asylum may be lifted.
Migrants were stopped 239,416 times in May, up 2% from 235,478 in April and up 33% from 180,597 in May 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said.
Recent months are the busiest in decades, but comparisons to pre-pandemic levels are complicated because migrants expelled under a public health authority known as Title 42 face no legal consequences, encouraging repeat attempts. Authorities said 25% of encounters were with people who had been stopped at least once in the previous year, compared with 15% in the five years before COVID-19.
The Biden administration planned to end Title 42 in May but a federal judge in Louisiana blocked the move.