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Federal Judge Enjoins Key Provisions of South Carolina’s Immigration Law

Released on Thu, Dec 22, 2011

Washington, D.C.—The American Immigration Council welcomes today’s ruling from U.S. District Judge Richard M. Gergel, which temporarily enjoined three provisions of South Carolina Act 69 and found a fourth provision likely to be overturned in future proceedings. The ruling makes South Carolina the sixth state—after Arizona, Indiana, Georgia, Utah, and Alabama—to see major parts of a punitive immigration law blocked in federal court. Read more...

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Report cites Latino, Asian voting clout

Published on Thu, Aug 13, 2009

Latinos and Asians are demonstrating growing clout in the voting booth, says the Immigration Policy Center, citing new U.S. census data.

Published in the Statesman

LAC Practice Advisory on Dent v. Holder and Obtaining Documents While in Removal Proceedings

Released on Wed, Jun 13, 2012

Practice Advisory on Dent v. Holder and Obtaining Documents from
the Government While in Removal Proceedings

Washington, D.C.—The Legal Action Center (LAC) is pleased to announce the issuance of a new Practice Advisory, Dent v. Holder and Strategies for Obtaining Documents from the Government During Removal Proceedings.

In Dent v. Holder, the Ninth Circuit found that the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) requires the government to turn over copies of documents in a respondent’s Alien File (A-file) in cases where removability is contested. Significantly, the court held that the respondent’s access to his or her records is not conditioned on filing a request under the Freedom of Information Act. This Practice Advisory discusses the Ninth Circuit’s decision and offers strategies for making document requests pursuant to the INA and due process, both in the Ninth Circuit, where Dent is binding authority, as well as outside the Ninth Circuit. 

For a complete list of all LAC Practice Advisories, please visit the LAC’s website.

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For more information, contact clearinghouse@immcouncil.org.    

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Naturalization in 1986 brought benefits to the country

Published on Thu, Nov 05, 2009

Undocumented Mexican migrants who won their legalization during the 1986 amnesty showed a marked improvement in their economic status, education levels increased substantially and thousands visibly moved out of poverty without relying on public assistance.

Published in the La Opinión

American Immigration Council Applauds DOMA Decision

Released on Wed, Jun 26, 2013

Washington D.C. - Today, the Supreme Court unequivocally affirmed that there is no legitimate reason for the federal government to discriminate against married couples on account of their sexual orientation.  The Justices struck down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage as between a man and a woman, noting in their decision, “DOMA’s principal effect is to identify a subset of state-sanctioned marriages and make them unequal.”

Today’s historic decision means that our immigration system must stop treating gay and lesbian families differently than other families.   For far too long, gay and lesbian U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents have been barred from obtaining immigration status for their noncitizen spouses.  As a result, families have been separated and spouses of U.S. citizens and permanent residents have been deported from the United States. 

President Obama issued an immediate directive to the Attorney General to “work with other members of my Cabinet to review all relevant federal statutes to ensure this decision, including its implications for Federal benefits and obligations, is implemented swiftly and smoothly.”

The Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano also issued a statement to press confirming that DHS is “working with our federal partners, including the Department of Justice, [to] implement today's decision so that all married couples will be treated equally and fairly in the administration of our immigration laws."

 Read more...

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Legalize 'Em

Published on Thu, Jan 07, 2010

The Center for American Progress and the Immigration Policy Center released a report today quantifying the potential economic benefits of comprehensive immigration reform. Legalize unauthorized workers, the study concludes, and the American GDP would grow by an additional $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years (kick them all out — never mind the cost of deportation — and we'd lose $2.6 trillion in the process).

Published in the Miller-McCune

New Practice Advisory Regarding Notices to Appear

Released on Mon, Jun 30, 2014

The American Immigration Council, ABA Commission on Immigration and Penn State Law’s Center for Immigrants’ Rights are pleased to announce the release of the practice advisory, Notices to Appear:  Legal Challenges and Strategies.

The Notice to Appear is the charging document used by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to notify a noncitizen about immigration charges and a future immigration court hearing. Filing a Notice to Appear (“NTA”) with the immigration court places an individual in a removal proceeding before a judge and is a significant step in the removal process. Various officials within the three major immigration-related components of the Department of Homeland Security — Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) — are empowered to issue NTAs, which trigger removal proceedings in immigration court. At various points after an NTA is issued, an attorney may negotiate with DHS to obtain a favorable exercise of prosecutorial discretion. DHS has discretion either to file the NTA with the court, thus going forward with removal proceedings, to drop or revise certain charges, or to cancel the NTA and thus end the removal proceedings. After the NTA is filed, DHS can exercise discretion through a joint motion asking the judge to administratively close or terminate proceedings. The decisions made by DHS about Notices to Appear are not just ministerial, but can impact the lives of noncitizens and their families in significant ways.Read more...

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Study Says Immigration Reform Could Be Good For ‘The Economy’

Published on Fri, Mar 12, 2010

One study shows that comprehensive immigration reform could add $1.5 trillion to the country’s GDP over the next 10 years by increasing consumption and investment. Comprehensive immigration reform, here, is defined as a plan that “creates a pathway to legal status for unauthorized immigrants in the United States and establishes flexible limits on permanent and temporary immigration that respond to changes in U.S. labor demand in the future.” According to this Center for American Progress and Immigration Policy Center study, comprehensive reform would also boost wages for both native-born and newly legalized immigrant workers.

Published in the The Nashville Post

United States Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Alleging Wrongful Deportation

Released on Thu, Jul 02, 2015

Washington D.C. - After more than two years of litigation, the U.S. government has agreed to settle a lawsuit filed by Leonel Ruiz on behalf of his minor daughter, E.R. The suit alleged that in 2011, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), a component of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), unlawfully detained Mr. Ruiz’s then 4-year-old daughter—a U.S. citizen—when she arrived at Dulles Airport in Virginia, deprived her of any contact with her parents, and sent her back to Guatemala rather than allowing her to join her parents, who awaited her arrival in New York.

According to the complaint, during the twenty hours E.R. was detained in CBP custody with her grandfather, she was given nothing to eat other than a cookie and soda and nowhere to nap other than the cold floor. She was finally able to return home to the United States nearly three weeks later, but only after her father hired a local attorney to fly to Guatemala to retrieve her. Once home, she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder by a child psychologist, who concluded that this was a result of her detention and her separation from her parents. The lawsuit, filed under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), sought damages for the harm E.R. suffered as a result of this ordeal. In June, the government agreed to pay E.R. $32,500.Read more...

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Obama Ignores Potential DHS Fixes In Immigration Pep Talk To Congress

Published on Fri, Apr 23, 2010

President Obama urged Congress today to pass “comprehensive immigration reform,” warning that a lack of federal action would encourage “misguided efforts” such as those in Arizona.

But Mary Giovagnoli of the Immigration Policy Center says there’s a lot the administration could do if it wanted to create a stronger immigration policy. And she said the work would start with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

Published in the The Cabinet Room