Attorneys and asylum applicants across the country regularly experience problems with the “asylum clock” — a clock which measures the 150 days after an applicant files an asylum application before the applicant can apply for an employment authorization document (EAD). These problems include a lack of clear guidance about how immigration agencies - both EOIR and USCIS - should interpret and implement the law governing the clock, the lack of a formal review process when an EAD is denied, and a general lack of transparency in USCIS’ administration of the clock. As a result of these problems and increasing court backlogs, asylum applicants often wait much longer than the legally permitted timeframe to receive a work permit and are thus unable to support themselves and their families while their applications are pending.
The LAC has long advised attorneys about methods for addressing asylum clock problems and advocated for systemic change in the current asylum clock process. These efforts included the issuance, in 2010, of a comprehensive report on the asylum clock, Up Against the Clock: Fixing the Broken Employment Authorization Asylum Clock, with Penn State Law School’s Center for Immigrants’ Rights. The report recommends solutions to asylum clock problems intended to ensure that asylum applicants become eligible for employment authorization without unnecessary delays and closer to the timeframe outlined in the INA.Read more...
The American Immigration Council (formerly the American Immigration Law Foundation) is pleased to present the 2009 "Appreciating America's Heritage" Teachers' Resource Guide. Each year, AILF publishes a new edition of this guide because it is important to promote respect, dignity and an appreciation for everyone in this country, regardless of where you were born. By ensuring our children learn that every person deserves respect and that celebrating multiculturalism is at the heart of our American values, the sooner the next generation can end the divisive rhetoric that has divided America for too long.
Wendy Sefsaf, a spokeswoman for the D.C.-based Immigration Policy Center, which supports comprehensive immigration reform, commended the idea. “We don’t want to lose skilled workers after we’ve educated them. That’s crazy. Particularly when we’re talking about ways to stimulate the economy.”
Sefsaf said there’s long been concern on the part of immigration reform advocates to piecemeal out more politically palatable items, whether that be addressing the needs of highly-skilled workers, agricultural workers or college students.
But now, she said, “It’s hard to say what will happen in this new Congress and whether there will be more of an appetite for piecemeal. If Flake had the wind at his back and lots of people supporting him, we would bring to bear what we could to make those things happen.”
This issue covers conflicting circuit court decisions on attorneys fees in naturalization delay suits, an update on ineffective assistance of counsel litigation, a circuit court decision upholding the Orantes injunction for Salvadorans, recent decisions addressing how to calculate the one year filing deadline for asylum applications, and a new AILF Practice Advisory on electronic filing in federal court.
Author: Introduction by Laura Danielson and Stephen Yale-Loehr, Stories by Saundra Amrhein, Photographs by Ariana Lindquist
The American Immigration Council is proud to support the publication of Green Card Stories. Green Card Stories (due to be printed in November 2011) is an incredible tribute to the diverse backgrounds that make up our immigrant population in America today. The American Immigration Council’s mission is to “strengthen America by honoring our immigrant history by shaping how Americans think about and act towards immigration now and in the future” and we can’t think of a better way to further our mission than through this beautiful and touching book.
Not only can you pre-order books for yourself, your office, family members, clients, etc. you can also pre-order a book to donate to your local school, library or community center or you can donate a book to one of the Council’s designated “hot spots” where education on immigration is needed most. Could your Member of Congress use a thank you or a gentle reminder of who our immigrant population is? Donate a copy of Green Card Stories to a Congressional office. All donated books will be delivered free of charge with a note indicating your generous gift.
To get a preview of the book, check out this slideshow.
As Republicans in the Florida legislature move forward with immigration-enforcement bills, new data shows that the number of unauthorized immigrants in the United States has remained stable.
According to a report released on Monday by the Immigration Policy Center:
Recent estimates from the Pew Hispanic Center and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) indicate that the number of unauthorized immigrants in the United States has remained unchanged at roughly 11 million since 2009. This comes after a two-year decline of approximately one million that corresponded closely to the most recent recession, which ran from December 2007 to June 2009.
The report also shows that three-fifths of unauthorized immigrants have been in the United States for more than a decade, and that unauthorized immigrants already in the U. S. have approximately 5.5 million children. Around 1 million of those children are unauthorized immigrants, while the remaining 4.5 million are native-born U.S. citizens who have at least one unauthorized parent.
Nationwide, unauthorized immigrants represent about 28 percent of the total foreign-born population. Naturalized U.S. citizens make up about 37 percent and legal permanent residents 31 percent.
The data used by the Immigration Policy Center report indicates that Florida has the third highest unauthorized population in the U.S. (825,000).
Citing Pew Hispanic Center data, the report indicates that the current unauthorized population accounts for roughly 1-in-20 workers: around 5 percent of the U.S. labor force.
“Unauthorized immigrants who are already in the country have become integral to U.S. businesses, communities, and families,” according to the report.
This issue covers litigation related to ICE raids at Swift plants, post-Lopez motions, developments in Acosta and Padilla-Caldera cases, challenges to Matter of Blake, and technical support from the National Immigration Project.
Since 1857, when a man named Dred Scott fought for his constitutional right to remain free after standing on free soil, the question of the Fourteenth Amendment and its citizenship provision has been brought to the table many times by others who also question when exactly they are free and citizens of the United States.
Even in the 21st century, this is not a decided issue.
Current public debate and even some pieces of proposed legislation in various states and in Congress are questioning whether the U.S. Constitution should be altered to deprive U.S. citizenship of those who are born on U.S. soil to undocumented parents. The Fourteenth Amendment, adopted in the wake of the Civil War, grants U.S. citizenship to anyone born in the United States and forbids states from depriving U.S. citizens of “privileges and immunities.”
The Federation for Immigration Reform (FAIR) is a non-profit citizens’ organization centralized in Washington, D.C., whose mission statement declares it dedicated to the cause of reforming immigration politics to serve a national interest. They said the only way to fix this issue is to start over.
“What we have said for a long, long time is that our current immigration policy doesn’t make any sense,” said Ira Mehlman, media director for FAIR. “It’s not serving the interest of the country. We keep trying to apply all kinds of different types of patches and add-ons. What we need to do is shut down the policy that exists and design one from scratch that actually serves the interest of the country.”
This includes changing the Fourteenth Amendment, or at least its current interpretation, especially with respect to the Citizenship Clause that overruled the Dred Scott decision. It declares, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”Read more...