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Immigration Law Blog

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Global Entry Program and other Trusted Traveler Programs No Longer Eligible for New Yorkers

The Department of Homeland Security has suspended New Yorkers from Global Entry and other Trusted Traveler programs in a letter to the New York Department of Motor Vehicles dated February 5, 2020.

DHS contends that New York’s new Driver’s License Privacy Act (“the Act”) will cause homeland risk and has therefore taken immediate action in response - affecting New Yorker’s eligibility for Trusted Traveler Programs and Vehicle Exports, including the following:

• New York residents will no longer be eligible to enroll or re-enroll in CBP’s Trusted Traveler Programs, specifically Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI and FAST (TTP accelerates processing into the United States from international destinations under Global Entry; for Canada only – under NEXUS; for Canada and Mexico only – under SENTRI; and quicker processing under FAST for commercial truck drivers entering/exiting the U.S.).

• Exporting used New York-titled and registered vehicles will be drastically delayed and might also become costlier.

DHS states that these actions are part of their initial assessment of the Act and that they will continue to “review Department-wide operations related to New York” to evaluate and moderate how the Act might negatively impact national security and law enforcement.

On Monday, February 10, 2020, New York’s attorney general’s office filed suit to block the ban that would affect thousands of state residents from enrolling in Trusted Traveler Programs allowing travelers to skip long lines at airports and borders.  The lawsuit will argue DHS’ defiance of a “congressional mandate by reducing participation in the programs” and the singling out of New Yorkers, which violates constitutional equal protection guarantees.  The New York Civil Liberties Union in conjunction with the attorney general’s office also plans to file a separate lawsuit against the DHS. 



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