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Events and Awards

The American Immigration Council’s event program is an important tool used to educate Americans of the important contributions made by immigrants to our society and to remind Americans that it is in our country's best interest to remain a nation of immigrants.

Annual Benefit

The Council hosts a national Annual Benefit gala, in conjunction with the American Immigration Lawyer’s Association’s (AILA) Annual Conference, where we award the American Heritage Award to honor the outstanding contributions of individual immigrants.

Immigrant Achievement Awards

The Council also hosts three additional regional Immigrant Achievement Awards in New York City, Chicago and Washington, DC. At the Washington, DC Immigrant Achievement Awards, the Council awards the Stephen K. Fischel Public Service Award as well as the American Immigration Council Youth Immigrant Achievement Award.

“Celebrate America” Creative Writing Contest

The Council’s Community Education Center sponsors the annual "Celebrate America" Creative Writing Contest in an ongoing effort to educate the public about the benefits of immigration to our society. Open to fifth grade students across the nation, this contest encourages our youth, families and surrounding communities to evaluate and appreciate the effects of immigration in our own lives. This, in turn, allows them to see that America is truly a nation of immigrants.

Quick Fact: Immigrants found large percentage of science and technology firms

Immigrant entrepreneurs have founded or co-founded 25.3% of all science and technology firms in the United States.

Backlash against Kris Kobach on immigration is growing

Published on Thu, Feb 09, 2012

Kris Kobach’s ears should be burning.

Backlash built this week against the Kansas secretary of state for gallivanting state-to-state, drumming up support for laws bent on driving illegal immigrants out.

The rebukes aren’t coming from his usual critics, those who display sanity about the federal reforms needed to effectively deal with illegal immigration.

No, Kobach’s supporters are barking back now. The legislators and taxpayers who bought into his schemes to make the lives of illegal immigrants so hellish that they “self-deport.”

The editorial board of the Press-Register in Mobile, Ala., accused Kobach of banking on exactly what happened there — costly court challenges and a wide-range of unintended consequences for legal residents.

“Alabama allowed itself to be used as a guinea pig on illegal immigration so that a Kansas lawyer could build his political career,” the editorial said.

So Alabama’s legislature has gone to work, figuring out how to rewrite or repeal the damage done by Kobach’s handiwork, measures passed in 2011.

On Monday, the Immigration Policy Center released “Discrediting ‘Self Deportation’ As Immigration Policy.” Yes, you can make life harsh for immigrants, but everyone else suffers, too. Economists predict Alabama’s gross domestic product will lose up to $10.8 billion as a result, and $57 million to $264 million more in state income and sales tax collections could evaporate.

Oops.

Anyway, data are beginning to show that immigrants don’t self-deport in substantial numbers.

It’s all sleight of hand, a hustle that eventually will reach the U.S. Supreme Court.

Missouri also stood out in national conversations for being among the gullible states where chasing around illegal immigrants is still gathering traction, despite experiences elsewhere.Read more...

Published in the The Kansas City Star

Letter to the Editor: Where Arizona’s immigration law is flawed

Published on Sun, Apr 29, 2012

Despite the Supreme Court justices’ apparent skepticism [“Justices receptive to parts of Arizona’s immigration law,” front page, April 26], the immigration status checks required by Arizona’s law subvert federal enforcement priorities and procedures. Section 2(B) requires Arizona police to verify the immigration status of all individuals arrested. This will result in thousands of additional verification requests to the federal government every year, significantly delay response times and divert scarce enforcement resources away from high-priority targets.

Section 2(B) also requires that, in the event of a lawful stop or an investigative detention, police check immigration status only if they have “reasonable suspicion” an individual is unlawfully present. Given the cursory nature of such stops, the complexities of federal immigration law and minimal guidance from the state law, police — under threat of civil damages — will be forced to rely on impermissible criteria such as race to make these determinations.

Such an arbitrary and unjust process contradicts the comprehensive enforcement scheme embodied in federal immigration law.

Melissa Crow, North Potomac

Published in the The Washington Post

Systemic Reforms

Systemic ReformsThe LAC has a strong track record of litigating to fix long-standing problems with our broken immigration system. Through our class action and other litigation, we have convinced the courts of appeals to overturn government policies that prevented an entire class of noncitizens from applying for lawful residency; that precluded individuals from presenting evidence to immigration judges in deportation cases; and that delayed for years permanent resident status for thousands of individuals who had been granted asylum. The LAC coordinates its litigation with immigration advocates nationwide and facilitates strategic planning and collaboration among immigration litigators.Read more...

DHS Unveils Guidance for Deferred Action for Qualfied Young Illegal Aliens

Published on Mon, Aug 06, 2012

Homeland Security Today cited the IPC's study, "Who And Where the DREAMers Are," in an in-depth article describing the new criteria surrounding Obama's deferred action plan:

Read more...

Published in the Homeland Security Today

Past Honorees

Each year, the American Immigration Council honors American immigrants and their achievements. Our distinguished honorees have come from politics, music, television, sports, education and many other professional fields. Click on each name to learn more about each honoree.

We congratulate our 2014 Honorees:

American Heritage Awards

 joseantoniovargas   Nachito Herrera   T.Emmanuel
   Carlos Arredondo
 Rais Bhuiyan
 Mary Mazzio

 

Immigrant Achievement AwardsRead more...

The IPC Cited in the Guardian

Published on Wed, Apr 17, 2013

The IPC was cited in an article discussing Florida Senator Marco Rubio's attempts to promote the new Senate "Group of Eight" immigration bill.  Here's an except:

"'Right now nobody benefits from the status quo,' Rubio told Univision's Jorge Ramos in an interview in Spanish. 'The only people who benefit right now are the criminals abusing the people who cross [the border] and the employers who abuse their workers by paying their workers less.'

Rubio is right but he has to make a stronger case. He should explain that immigrants are not a drain but a net benefit for the United States, if there is a pathway to green cards and citizenship for the 11 million undocumented living in the United States.

What Rubio didn't detail is how the undocumented contribute to the economy by paying taxes. If they are given legal residency and citizenship, they will be able to contribute more over time. According to the Immigration Policy Center, households headed by undocumented immigrants paid a combined $11.2bn in state and local taxes in 2010."

Published in the Guardian

Jeanne Batalova, Ph.D.

Jeanne Batalova, Ph.D. is a Policy Analyst at MPI and Manager of the MPI Data Hub, an online resource that provides instant access to the latest facts, stats, and maps covering US and global data on immigration and immigrant integration. Her areas of expertise include the impacts of immigrants on society and labor markets; the integration of immigrant children and elderly immigrants; and the policies and practices regulating immigration of highly skilled workers and foreign students. She earned her PhD in sociology, with a specialization in demography, from the University of California-Irvine; an MBA from Roosevelt University; and bachelor of the arts in economics from the Academy of Economic Studies, Chisinau, Moldova.