A D.C. District Court judge ruled the Trump Administration is denying the parole (release from custody) of asylum-seekers contrary to a 2009 ICE policy, and must give them a chance at freedom until that policy is changed. Judge James Boasberg’s ruling affects asylum-seekers at five ICE offices where parole denial rates ranged between 92 percent and 100 percent of cases.

The judge wrote, “To be clear, in finding that injunctive relief is warranted in this case, this Court is simply ordering that Defendants [Administration] do what they already admit is required – follow the ICE Directive when adjudicating asylum-seekers’ detention. The Directive provides a framework of minimum protections for those claiming refugee status, and, as Defendants acknowledge, it is binding on the Government. To mandate that ICE provide these baseline procedures to those entering our country…is no great judicial leap. Rather, the issuance of injunctive relief in this case serves only to hold Defendants accountable to their own governing policies and to ensure that Plaintiffs receive the protections they are due under the Parole Directive.”

Boasberg said five ICE offices had stopped conducting individualized assessments consistent with its 2009 policy and was rejecting parole requests outright. ICE offices in Philadelphia, El Paso, and Newark rejected 100 percent of parole requests while offices in Los Angeles and Detroit offices denied 92 percent and 98 percent of requests, respectively. The judge said, “The numbers here are irrefutable” even though ICE never announced a change in policy.

The judge’s ruling requires the five ICE offices to give denied asylum seekers another chance to show they deserve parole. That entails proving their identity, that they’re not a flight risk and that they do not pose a risk to public safety or national security.

The Trump Administration has argued the credible fear standard for asylum seekers is too low and gives aliens the freedom to just disappear. Only 15 percent of those making credible fear claims this fiscal year actually filed for asylum. And only about 1-in-5 of those who do will eventually win their asylum case in court. That means, The Washington Times notes, that “only about 3 percent of the migrants arriving at the border and claiming asylum will actually be granted that status.”

Read more in The Washington Times.

Updated: Tue, Jul 17th 2018 @ 4:45pm EDT