Washington, D.C. – Over the past week, an alliance of immigration groups, private attorneys and a law school clinic joined forces in filing complaints targeting abuses by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) across the country. Ten damages cases have been filed alleging unlawful CBP conduct in northern and southern border states. These cases are the latest illustrations of an ongoing pattern of rampant misconduct against both immigrants and U.S. citizens in these states.
This effort, which was coordinated by the American Immigration Council, the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, and the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties, highlights CBP agents’ unlawful use of their enforcement authority. Border Patrol agents routinely exceed their statutory mandate by conducting enforcement activities outside border regions, making racially motivated arrests, employing derogatory and coercive interrogation tactics, and imprisoning arrestees under inhumane conditions. The cases include claims for unlawful search and seizure, false imprisonment, intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault, and battery.
With Veterans Day and the tragic events of Fort Hood fresh in the public mind, a new report from the Immigration Policy Center (IPC) entitled Essential to the Fight: Immigrants in the Military, Eight Years After 9/11 should provide some perspective. One of the main points of the report is that "Without the contributions of immigrants, the military could not meet its recruiting goals and could not fill its need for foreign-language translators, interpreters and cultural experts."
Washington, D.C. - Last week, the First Circuit Court of Appeals held that individuals who have been deported must have the opportunity to pursue motions to reopen their cases from outside the United States. A motion to reopen is an important procedural safeguard that helps ensure noncitizens are afforded a fair immigration hearing. The American Immigration Council and the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG), which filed an amicus brief in the First Circuit and argued before the court, welcome the court’s ruling in Perez Santana v. Holder.
Despite having lost in nine other circuits, the government continued to vigorously defend a regulation – the so called “departure bar” – barring individuals from pursuing their cases from outside the United States. This most recent decision means that all but one circuit court of appeals has rejected the government’s arguments and concluded that the regulation is unlawful. Only the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals has yet to rule on the legality of the departure bar. The American Immigration Council and NIPNLG renew their call for the agency to strike this unlawful regulation.Read more...
IF CONGRESS has any sense, it will pass immigration reform this year. That's the topic of this week's column.
A new report from the Centre for American Progress, an Obamaphile think-tank, finds that comprehensive immigration reform would add $1.5 trillion to America's GDP over ten years.
Not everything that raises GDP is a good idea. Reihan Salam, a conservative writer, pointed out to me yesterday that annexing Canada would raise GDP by a lot. But it would have serious downsides, such as Americans having to find out where Canada is.
In the weeks leading up to the March 21 demonstration for comprehensive immigration reform, organizers were careful to tamp down turnout expectations, stating only that "tens of thousands" would descend on Washington. It was just a few days before the event--with reports of countless buses heading toward the nation's capital--that they hinted that the crowd could reach 100,000.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer just signed into law the controversial immigration bill that has drawn national scrutiny and triggered furious protests. "I firmly believe it represents what's best for Arizona," she said. The bill "strengthens the laws of our state. It protects all of us." And, she added, "it does so while ensuring the constitutional rights of all in Arizona remain solid, stable, and steadfast."
Fewer U.S.-born teenagers are working or looking for summer jobs. Most analysts can agree on this statement.
However, as the summer nears and jobs are scarce, the debate over the factors contributing to the decade-long decline is heating up – especially among activists and analysts embroiled in the immigration movement.
"The decline in teenage employment is very worrisome because a large body of research shows that those who do not work as teenagers often fail to develop the work habits necessary to function in the labor market later in life," said Steven Camarota, the director of research at the Center for Immigration Studies who co-authored a study about the issue.
"Since the Calderon administration has taken office, you have around 20,000 homicides that have occurred, many of those from U.S. weapons," said Dr. David Shirk, Director of the Trans-Border Institute at the University of California, San Diego, during a conference call on border security arranged by the Immigration Policy Center. "It's really hard to deal honestly with Mexico and say we want you to help us continue this effort but we're not going to stop arming the people that you're fighting by clapping down a little bit more on our own southbound flow of guns."
"The consensus from most of my colleagues is that it probably will go to the Supreme Court," said Mo Goldman, an immigration attorney in Tucson, Ariz., and a board member of the American Immigration Council.
AIC's Goldman, who applauded the decision, conceded the law was popular but said a backlash "remains to be seen."
"I think the majority of people just want to see our immigration system fixed by Congress and maybe this law ... will put additional pressure on Congress to get the job done, finally," he said.
This practice advisory addresses the term “religious occupation,” as it is used with respect to certain categories of religious workers. It also addresses federal courts cases overturning AAO decisions that erroneously imposed heightened requirements for “religious occupation.”