This month's issue of J-1 JOURNEYS features important information on what do do if your are leaving the US and returning during your J-1 program, recipes for refreshing summer treats, and advice on what to do when your American party guests arrive late!
WASHINGTON -- The idea that prospective immigrants simply wait their turn to enter the U.S. legally, as advocates of Alabama's immigration law suggest, would apply to only a few because the legal paths for entering the country permanently are selective, limited and backlogged.
There are 4.7 million people from around the world already in line waiting for a chance to move in, according to the latest figures from the U.S. State Department. And the law, as set out in the Immigration and Nationality Act, does not let just anyone get in line.
The law is specific about who is allowed in on a permanent basis, coinciding with four general objectives of federal immigration policy: to reunite families, attract workers with special skills, increase diversity from countries that don't usually have high numbers of immigrants to the U.S., and protect people who are fleeing persecution in their home countries.
If someone wants to immigrate permanently, they have to fall into one of those four categories. Even then, the wait can last years or decades. For example, applications filed by Mexican unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens before April 1993 are the ones being considered now, according to a monthly update from the State Department.
In other words, the proposal that illegal immigrants should have just waited for their turn is not even possible.
"When there is no line to get into, those are times when people feel they don't have options," said Mary Giovagnoli, director of the Immigration Policy Center and former associate chief counsel for United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.
There are 12.6 million legal permanent residents currently living in the United States plus millions more who have long since become naturalized citizens.Read more...
The Department of State has released a new version of form DS 7002, the Trainee/Intern Placement Plan for J-1 applicants.
The new form can be viewed online on the Department of State website HERE.
In conjunction with the release of the new form, the International Exchange Center has revised our 2013 Application Packet. In addition to including the new version of form DS 7002, we have streamlined our application materials. We will be continuing to move our appication to an electronic system so please check our website FREQUENTLY for more updates.
Jo Oyanagi, 23, of Tokyo, Japan is a J-1 trainee at Trek Bicycle Corporation in Waterloo, Wisconsin. Jo works for Trek in Japan and is taking part in a J-1 exchange program in order to learn an American perspective on customer service and sales techniques that he will bring back to the Japanese side of the company when his training in the US is complete. Read more...
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A coalition of business groups will propose Kansas start a new program to help some illegal immigrants remain in the state so they can hold down jobs in agriculture and other industries with labor shortages, coalition representatives disclosed Tuesday.
A spokeswoman for the Washington-based Immigration Policy Council called the proposal "unprecedented" and questioned whether the federal government would allow such a program, though she was sympathetic toward supporters' goals. Utah has set up a guest-worker program, but it doesn't take effect until 2013 and was part of a broader package of initiatives on immigration.
The Kansas proposal also is notable because it complicates the debate over immigration issues in the home state of Kris Kobach, a former law professor who helped draft tough laws against illegal immigration in Alabama and Arizona. Kobach, known nationally for advising state and local officials across the nation on immigration issues, is secretary of state, the chief elections official in Kansas.
The proposal is likely to stir controversy in the Kansas Legislature and divide the Republican majority, some of whose members are pursuing proposals to crack down on illegal immigration. Representatives of the business coalition, which includes agriculture groups and the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, provided a draft copy of their proposed legislation to The Associated Press ahead of its formal introduction in the House and Senate.
Supporters of the proposal acknowledge they're trying to protect industries heavily reliant on laborers, particularly agriculture. But state officials and backers don't have any hard numbers for how many jobs are in danger of going unfilled. Kansas has an estimated 45,000 illegal-immigrant workers.Read more...
The American Immigration Council’s Legal Action Center (LAC) hires legal fellows on an as-needed basis. The LAC collaborates with students applying for fellowship funding. In order to be considered for a fellowship with us, individuals must either be a current law school student or a law school graduate and must be a strong researcher and writer. If interested in a fellowship, please e-mail a cover letter and resume to email@example.com.
No internships available at this time.
There are many ways that you can get involved with the American Immigration Council. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
In January, Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona made headlines when she was photographed thrusting an accusatory finger in President Barack Obama's face during a confrontation on a Phoenix tarmac. Brewer later explained that the president was "a little disturbed" about her book, in which she described Obama as weak on immigration.
The fleeting exchange filtered quickly out of the news cycle, but the image encapsulated the underlying legal issue as the U.S. Supreme Court takes up Arizona's new immigration law on Wednesday. Fundamentally, the case pivots on the relationship between states and the federal government when it comes to enforcing immigration law. Read more...