by Jennie Taer
The Biden administration is on pace to quickly meet its cap for a program to grant Venezuelan migrants legal entry just a few weeks after implementation, according to Reuters.
The U.S. has granted entry to around 7,000 migrants, Reuters reported, citing a source familiar with the matter. The program, which began in early October, will allow a total of 24,000 Venezuelan migrants to enter legally.
“It is clear that this orderly and limited way to live and work in the United States is providing incentives to Venezuelans to not put their lives in the hands of smugglers,” the source familiar said, according to Reuters.
The approval process takes hours or days and requires migrants to have a U.S. sponsor, according to Reuters. “It’s incredible,” Maria Antonietta Diaz, who is a sponsor to migrants through the program, said, adding that it shows “huge progress” for the typically slow legal immigration process in the U.S.
The program also attempts to discourage Venezuelan migrants from illegally entering the country by handing the ones who cross between ports of entry at the border back to Mexican authorities.
“These actions make clear that there is a lawful and orderly way for Venezuelans to enter the United States, and lawful entry is the only way,” DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said when the program was announced.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) encountered over 187,000 migrants from Venezuela at the southern border in fiscal year 2022, according to agency statistics.
Neither U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) nor the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s requests for comment.
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Jennie Taer is a reporter at Daily Caller News Foundation.