Department of Homeland Security's 'Metering' Policy: Legal Issues [Updated March 8, 2022] [open pdf - 772KB]
From the Document: "Generally, a non-U.S. national ('alien', as the term is used in the Immigration and Nationality Act [hyperlink] [INA]) who arrives in the United States without valid documentation is subject to a streamlined, expedited removal process [hyperlink], but may pursue asylum and related protections [hyperlink] if the alien demonstrates a credible fear of persecution in his or her country of origin. Before the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS's) U.S. Customs and Border Protection [hyperlink] (CBP) had been limiting the number of asylum seekers who were processed each day at designated ports of entry along the U.S. southern border. Aliens affected by this policy generally had not yet reached the U.S. border and were required to remain in Mexico until CBP decided it could process them. This policy-- known as 'metering'--sought to address an 'unprecedented rise in asylum requests [hyperlink],' as well as safety and health concerns [hyperlink] resulting from overcrowding at ports of entry. The policy has led to [hyperlink] long wait times and overcrowded conditions on the Mexican side of the border, and has arguably incentivized [hyperlink] attempts to illegally cross the border between ports of entry."
CRS Legal Sidebar, LSB10295
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/