The Biden administration is ordering U.S. immigration enforcement agencies to change how they talk about immigrants.
The terms "illegal alien" and "assimilation" are out — replaced by "undocumented noncitizen" and "integration."
The new guidance is laid out in a pair of detailed memos sent Monday by the heads of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection, part of a broader effort by the Biden administration to roll back the previous administration's hard-line policies and build what they call a more "humane" immigration system.
"We set a tone and example for our country and partners across the world," Troy Miller, the top official at Customs and Border Protection, said in his memo. "We enforce our nation's laws while also maintaining the dignity of every individual with whom we interact. The words we use matter and will serve to further confer that dignity to those in our custody."
The new guidance mirrors an earlier change in language at U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency in charge of legal immigration.
The word "alien" is used throughout U.S. immigration law. But the White House is seeking to replace it as part of a sweeping overhaul bill it sent to Congress.