Skip to Content

Programs:

Legalization

Collaborative Learning at the Kauffman Foundation

May, 2010

Usually we select one trainee or intern as our Exchange Visitor of the Month. For May, we have decided to highlight a group of trainees. While the majority of our trainees and interns are the only J-1 visa holders at their host companies, some companies choose to have many trainees or interns at once. This is the case with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City, Missouri, an organization that, according to its mission statement, “works nationwide to catalyze an entrepreneurial society in which job creation, innovation, and the economy flourish.” Read more...

Immigrant organizations call for action on immigration reform

Published on Thu, May 12, 2011

The reaction from different pro-immigrant organizations to President Obama’s speech this week on immigration was mixed, but all tend to agree the administration needs to lead with action.

In his speech President Obama spelled out on his administrations increases on border security, adding that they have gone above and beyond what was requested by the people supported broader reform as long as there was more enforcement, but now are calling even more enforcement to ensure the border is secure before talking about comprehensive immigration reform. At the same time, immigrant advocacy groups are calling on the president to put a stop to detentions and deportations – other words, to scale back enforcement until lawmakers can fix the system as a whole.

Jonathan Fried of Homestead-based We Count said that president Obama made this speech to boost his ratings with Latino and other immigrant voters, adding that Obama has failed to move immigration reform while his enforcement policies have separated immigrant families.

“It is fine for him to say he’s starting another dialog in immigration but their isn’t anything new,” Fried said, “I think it is an effort to save face and get votes.”

“It is not accompanied by a legislative proposal, if he really wants to send a message he needs to look at what his administration is doing,”Fried added.

The National Alliance of Latin American and Caribbean Communities press release said that despite Democratic Party majorities in the House and Senate over the last two years no immigration policy reform was enacted, and called on the Obama Administration to change its current enforcement approach.Read more...

Published in the Florida Independent

Supreme Court Reverses Second Circuit Decision on Post-9/11 Detention Suit

Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009)

On May 18, 2009, a divided Supreme Court reversed the Second Circuit's decision upholding the denial of a motion to dismiss respondent's complaint alleging constitutional violations by defendants. Following his arrest and detention for more than 150 days in a maximum security detention center after 9/11 attacks, respondent Iqbal, who is a Muslim and a native of Pakistan, filed a lawsuit against then-Attorney General, John Ashcroft and other officers and officials. The complaint alleged that government officials adopted an unconstitutional policy of subjecting certain individuals to harsh conditions of confinement based on their race, religion, or national origin. Iqbal claimed that petitioners violated his First and Fifth Amendment rights. Read more...

Guest commentary: Michigan should avoid divisive immigration laws

Published on Thu, Jul 14, 2011

Gov. Rick Snyder on Monday will make his first major policy speech on immigration. Snyder already has signaled his opposition to an Arizona-style immigration bill, saying any such measure would further divide our state. Here's why that's a wise position.

Our immigration system has no capacity to deal with some 12 million undocumented people already in this country. Deportation is tearing families apart, and a backlog in processing applications creates agonizingly long wait times. Reports of overzealous immigration enforcement -- including stakeouts at a Detroit elementary school -- are only the most recent examples of why we must overhaul this system. But fair, humane legislation demands a comprehensive approach from the White House, not the statehouse.

Immigration bills were introduced in 23 states last year. At least five states have enacted "show me your papers" laws. Arizona blazed the path in 2010 with a sweeping measure that makes it a crime for people to fail to carry immigration documents, and gives police broad powers to detain anyone suspected of being in the country illegally.

A blatantly unconstitutional Alabama law goes even further, requiring school officials to verify the immigration status of children and their parents, authorizing police to demand papers during traffic stops, and even criminalizing Alabama residents for day-to-day interactions with undocumented individuals.

Such patchwork, state-by-state measures virtually guarantee the proliferation of racial profiling -- an issue with which the Arab-American community is all too familiar.Read more...

Published in the Detroit Free Press

Court to Hear Consular Non-reviewability Case

Kerry v. Din, No. 13-1402 (cert. granted Oct. 2, 2014)

In Kerry v. Din, a case addressing the availability of federal court review for visa denials, the Supreme Court heard oral argument on February 23, 2015. The government often argues that such review is barred pursuant to the doctrine of consular non-reviewability, which provides that courts should not review consular officers’ visa decisions due to their wholly discretionary nature; the Supreme Court previously held that federal court review is not appropriate where the visa decision is based on a facially legitimate and bona fide reason. Kliendienst v. Mandel, 408 U.S. 753 (1972). In Din, a U.S. citizen sought review of the denial of her application for a visa for her husband, after consular officials stated only that the denial was pursuant to INA § 212(a)(3)(B), 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(3)(B), which describes a broad array of terrorism-related grounds of inadmissibility. The government sought certiorari after the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that Ms. Din had a “constitutionally protected due process right to limited judicial review of her husband's visa denial” based on her liberty interest in her marriage and that citation to § 212(a)(3)(B), absent any allegation regarding what rendered the individual seeking entry into the United States inadmissible, is insufficient to show that a visa denial is facially legitimate under Mandel. See Din v. Kerry, 718 F.3d 856 (9th Cir. 2013).

Going Beyond The Politics Of Discretion In The American Immigration System

Published on Fri, Sep 02, 2011

The ability of whether the President can use discretion in the immigration arena has become the flavor of the month. The announcement by the DHS on August 18, 2001 under which 300,000 individuals who are low priority can hope to have their cases closed and obtain work authorization was welcomed. The details about how this policy will play out are nicely explained in a Legal Action Center advisory. Although many were pleasantly surprised by this policy, within days of the announcement even advocates for immigration reform have become skeptical about whether this policy will have a dramatic and far reaching impact. Obama supporters have even gone so far to accuse the Obama administration for mere window dressing in order to keep certain voters on his side in the next elections. Commentators such as Dan Kowalski also justifiably feel that ICE personnel will continue to ignore this policy, and choose not to exercise their discretion favorably.

While the President has his critics within the pro-immigration camp regarding his new announcement on discretion, the attempt by immigration restrictionists in Congress to blunt the June 17, 2011 Morton Memo on prosecutorial discretion when viewed in a larger context repeats an old pattern. For instance, Congressmen Lamar Smith (R-TX) and Senator Vitter have proposed a most unusual piece of legislation suitably called the HALT Act (Hinder the Administration’s Legalization Temptation Act) that will suspend all of the Administration’s discretionary relief until January 21, 2013, which is the day after the next Presidential inauguration.Read more...

Published in the Immigration Daily

About the International Exchange Center

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE

The purpose of the International Exchange Center (IEC) is to create educational resources and opportunities that recognize our immigrant heritage. Dedicated to respecting, valuing, and celebrating cultural differences, the International Exchange Center programs create a synergy of the best ideas from many cultures for the benefit of all.

WHAT WE DO

The International Exchange Center fosters the exchange of culture, ideas and knowledge through sponsorship of the J-1 visa in the trainee and intern categories and the organization of periodic study tours to various cities around the world.
The Exchange Visitor (J) non-immigrant visa category is for individuals approved to participate in work and study based exchange visitor programs, which enable foreign nationals to visit and experience life in the United States. The U.S. Department of State designates sponsors to oversee J programs.

It is necessary for an applicant to have a sponsor before applying for the J-1 visa at the U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country. We welcome inquiries from U.S. host companies, their attorneys and from potential international interns and trainees.

As a sponsor, it is our responsibility to vet both the international applicant and the U.S. host organization for J-1 visa eligibility. We pride ourselves on screening and overseeing every exchange program directly. For this reason we do not work with overseas recruiters or U.S. placement agencies.Read more...

The Criminalization of Immigration in the United States

Image: 

Immigrants are (still) less likely to commit serious crimes or be behind bars than the native-born. Here are the facts in our latest report.