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Board of Immigration Appeals Overturns Previous Ruling, Narrows Grounds for Deportation

Released on Fri, Feb 04, 2011

Washington, D.C. - On Thursday, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) modified its much-criticized interpretation of a law which wrongly expanded the number of immigrants subject to removal from the United States. The BIA's modification partially adopts the position of the American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center, which argued in an amicus brief that a prior BIA decision ignored the intent of Congress when it interpreted the law to cover longtime U.S residents in addition to more recent arrivals.Read more...

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BIA Sets Favorable Precedent for Children of Fiancées (K-2 Visa Holders)

Released on Wed, Jun 29, 2011

Washington, D.C.—The Legal Action Center of the American Immigration Council applauds the Board of Immigration Appeals (Board) for advancing family unity in its June 23, 2011 decision, Matter of Le. The Board’s long-awaited ruling favorably resolves the issue of whether the child of a fiancée of a U.S. citizen (a K-2 visa holder), who legally entered the U.S. when under age 21, is eligible for adjustment of status even after turning age 21. The Board concluded that the age of the child is “fixed” at the time the child is admitted to the United States. In doing so, it rejected the Department of Homeland Security’s position that a K-2 visa holder is eligible only if he or she is under 21 at the time the adjustment of status application is adjudicated.

The Board’s decision is consistent with the position that the American Immigration Council and the American Immigration Lawyers Association advocated in amicus briefs submitted to the Board in approximately a half dozen other cases where the child turned 21 after being admitted to the United States. The noncitizens in these and the many other cases before both Immigration Judges and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services offices throughout the country now will be able to become lawful permanent residents as Congress intended.

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Conrad And Baucus Appease Joe Wilson

Published on Thu, Sep 10, 2009

Most right-wingers and health care reform haters have at least conceded that there's language in the House health care bill that explicitly excludes undocumented immigrants, but none of them are willing to swallow their pride and admit that Rep. Joe Wilson’s (R-SC) blow-up was also factually incorrect. Republicans incessantly continue citing "loopholes" that they suggest actually do render President Obama a liar, or at the very least, misinformed.

Published in the Wonkroom

Missouri State Legislature Pursing Budget Busting Solutions to Immigration

Anti-Immigrant Bill SB590 Will Cost the State Millions

Released on Tue, Jan 31, 2012

Washington D.C. – As Missouri faces a $704 million shortfall in fiscal year 2012, state legislators are currently pursuing a costly and short-sighted anti-immigrant law. Senate Bill 590 is similar to the immigration law passed in Alabama and is currently working its way through the state legislature. The costs associated with the bill are unknown because the fiscal note attached to it is woefully incomplete. According to the Missouri fiscal note, the law would cost taxpayers $156,000 the first year, and $43,000 in subsequent years, primarily for recording and reporting the immigration status of Missouri’s school children.  However, the fiscal note claims that the provisions to detain, arrest, jail, and prosecute suspected unauthorized immigrants will have no additional costs.   The note further claims the costs for enforcement activities will be “absorbed with existing resources,” meaning that resources will be diverted away from other important law enforcement activities.

Other states pursuing similar measures, such as Kentucky and Utah, have estimated the costs, which reach into the tens of millions of dollars. Aside from the costs of implementation there are whopping costs for defending these measures in court. Missouri legislators should consider the following evidence before final votes on SB 590.Read more...

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Immigrants are vital to recovery

Published on Sun, Aug 16, 2009

As Pennsylvania grapples with a budget deficit brought on by the current recession, state and local policy makers would do well to keep in mind that immigrant communities are a potent force for economic recovery.

Published in the Philadelphia Inquirer

The American Immigration Council Welcomes Customs and Border Protection’s New Guidance on Interpretation

Released on Fri, Dec 14, 2012

Washington D.C. - The American Immigration Council (AIC) welcomes U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) decision, announced yesterday, to stop providing interpretation assistance to other law enforcement agencies.  This decision, which is set forth in new agency guidance that has not been publicly released, reportedly directs CBP personnel to refer requests for language translation to a list of private regional and state interpreter associations.  The guidance does not affect CBP’s authority to respond to requests from law enforcement agencies for other types of assistance.Read more...

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Poll: Mexicans More Likely to Come to U.S. if Granted Amnesty

Published on Wed, Oct 14, 2009

The polling wars on immigration reform have officially begun. Today, the Center for Immigration Studies, which aims to restrict immigration to the United States and deport those who are here illegally, sent around the findings of a recent Zogby poll which finds that — surprise! — a majority of Mexicans say they think their friends and family would be more likely to come to the United States if the U.S. granted them permanent legal status. Never mind that no U.S. lawmaker is actually proposing to do that.

Published in the The Washington Independent

ICE Agrees to Release Thousands of Previously-Withheld Records

Settlement Will Provide First Detailed Look at “Criminal Alien Program”

Released on Fri, Aug 02, 2013

Washington, DC – Yesterday, a U.S. District Court in Connecticut approved a settlement in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit challenging the refusal of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to release tens of thousands of documents about the Criminal Alien Program (CAP), one of the agency’s largest enforcement programs. CAP currently is active in all state and federal prisons, as well as more than 300 local jails throughout the country and is implicated in approximately half of all deportation proceedings.  Although CAP supposedly targets the worst criminal offenders, the program also appears to target individuals with little or no criminal history for deportation and to incentivize pretextual stops and racial profiling.

Although CAP facilitates the removal of hundreds of thousands of individuals each year, very little information about the program is available to the public. To better understand CAP, the American Immigration Council (AIC), in collaboration with the Worker and Immigrant Rights Advocacy Clinic of Yale Law School and the Connecticut chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), filed a FOIA lawsuit to compel ICE to disclose information about CAP. 

Under the terms of the settlement, ICE has agreed to produce numerous previously-withheld records, including:Read more...

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Immigrant legalization viewed as a boon

Published on Fri, Jan 08, 2010

Legalizing the status of the roughly 12 million unauthorized immigrants living in this country would create jobs, increase wages and boost the sagging U.S. economy, an academic study released Thursday says.

Published in the San Antonio Express