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Social Justice Groups Rally Against Racial and Immigrant Profiling

Published on Sun, Feb 13, 2011

According to the Washington D.C. based non-profit Immigration Policy Center, when a person is arrested and booked into jail, "...his or her fingerprints are checked against the U.S. Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology Program (US-VISIT), and the Automated Biometric Identification System (IDENT)...This fingerprint check allows state and local law enforcement and ICE automatically and immediately to search the databases for an individual’s criminal and immigration history."

When a match between the person and an immigration violation arises, the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) and local law enforcement are notified, and a "detainer" or an order to hold the person arrested is issued, giving federal authorities jurisdiction over that individual, according to the Center's fact sheet.

Published in the Open Media Boston

Litigation Clearinghouse Newsletter Vol. 1, No. 12

This issue covers BEC 45 day letters, the Supreme Court decision in the RICO case, and the "arriving alien" adjustment regulation.

Published On: Thursday, June 8, 2006 | Download File

Latest GOP Fear Mongering Issue: ‘Birth Tourism’

Published on Wed, Apr 06, 2011

Republicans like Reps. David Vitter and Mike Lee and Sens. Rand Paul and Jerry Moran all built platforms on their “pro-family” politics. So, what does it take for these men to paint childbirth as “reprehensible?” You guessed it: these GOP lawmakers are again thumping their drums against “birth tourism,” an illusory epidemic in which illegal immigrants are traveling to the United States to give birth, thus guaranteeing their child, derided by these men as “anchor babies,” national citizenship.

“It is a reprehensible practice,” said Vitter, a Louisiana Congressman whose career survived revelations that he hired hookers.

Hoping to put an end to these illegal immigrants’ life-giving ways, these Republican leaders have drafted legislation that would “correct” a misinterpretation of the 14th amendment, which clearly reads, “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,” and restrict citizenship to children born to at least one citizen, someone in the military or a legal resident.

Opponents of the legislation not only point out that “birth tourism” hardly represents the trend Rand Paul and company claim (only 7,670 of the 4.2 million babies born in the U.S. in 2006 were by mothers who don’t live here) but also insist that the Republican leaders are playing with constitutional fire.

“The Supreme Court has upheld birthright citizenship several times, and the leading constitutional scholars agree you would have to change the Constitution, not just the Immigration and Nationality Act as they’re trying to do here,” said Michele Waslin from the Immigration Policy Center.Read more...

Published in the Death and Taxes Magazine

Lawsuit Filed against DHS and USCIS Seeks Transparency Promised by Obama Administration

AILA v. DHS is a FOIA lawsuit seeking the public release of records concerning agency policies and procedures for the "H-1B" visa program – a program which allows U.S. businesses to temporarily employ highly-skilled foreign workers.

AILA v. DHS is a FOIA lawsuit seeking the public release of records concerning agency policies and procedures for the "H-1B" visa program – a program which allows U.S. businesses to temporarily employ highly-skilled foreign workers. AILA had pursued disclosure of the documents through two separate Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, both of which were denied in full by the government.

The suit is brought by the American Immigration Council and Steptoe & Johnson LLP.

CASE UPDATES

Proceedings in District Court

On July 20, 2010, plaintiff AILA filed a complaint in district court asking the court to order defendants to conduct a reasonable search for the records responsive to AILA’s requests; to be enjoined from continuing to withhold information relevant to the requests; to declare the requested records are not exempt from disclosure and make copies available to AILA; and to award any other relief that the court deems just and equitable.

 

Ishwinder Kaur Explores the United States

January, 2010
Ishwinder Kaur

Ishwinder Kaur, 23, hails from New Delhi, India. She is currently training in Chicago in the field of business research and administration. She feels welcome in the US, and affectionately refers to Chicago as “a city of cold winds and warm hearts." Read more...

U.S. agriculture a balancing act

Published on Sun, May 29, 2011

A piecemeal approach to immigration reform is the politically easy option, but there will be unintended negative consequences unless Congress addresses the whole problem.

An effective system to verify a job applicant's eligibility to work in the United States is an essential part of immigration reform. So are tough employer sanctions for those who hire the undocumented.

But if Congress just mandates the use of the employee-screening E-Verify system without dealing with labor demands, the job magnet will remain and the economy will suffer.

The agriculture industry is forthright in saying that up to 70 percent of its workforce is undocumented. There are no Americans to take those jobs.

"Are you raising your child to be a farmworker?" asks Tom Nassif, president of the Western Growers Association, which represents growers in California and Arizona. He says his industry has been trying to educate Congress about the simple fact that making E-Verify mandatory without addressing labor needs "wipes out agriculture."

John McClung, president of the Texas Produce Association, says E-Verify in isolation would be "the death knell" of agriculture in the United States . Without workers, farmers would move their cropland to where the labor is: Mexico and Central America. Nassif says two to three non-farm jobs are created for every farm job, so the result would be widespread job losses in the United States.

The other likely result, as Joe Sigg of the Arizona Farm Bureau points out, would be "under-the-table and off-the-books" employment.

Research bears this out. The nonpartisan Immigration Policy Center study, "Deeper Into the Shadows," found workers who lost their jobs because of enforcement tended to return to work - often at the same job - on a cash-only basis. They were generally paid less and became more vulnerable to exploitation.

E-Verify alone will create problems because it does not deal with the need for labor.Read more...

Published in the Arizona Republic

Court Holds Traditional Standard Applies to Stays of Removal Pending Petitions for Review

 Nken v. Holder, 556 U.S. 418 (2009)

The Supreme Court held that a court of appeals should apply the traditional criteria governing stays when adjudicating a stay of removal pending a petition for review. In doing so, the Court rejected the government’s argument that the stringent standard in INA § 242(f)(2) (“clear and convincing evidence” that the removal order “is prohibited as a matter of law") applies. The Court’s decision reversed the Fourth and Eleventh Circuits, which had held that INA § 242(f)(2) applies to stays of removal pending petitions for review. Read more...