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Chasing the Dream: Sorting Fact and Myth Is Biggest Obstacle to Immigration Reform

Published on Tue, May 01, 2012

Consensus doesn’t seem to have a place in policy discussions about the state of the U.S. immigration system. But there is, at least, widespread agreement that the system needs fixing.

“Everyone will tell you the laws aren’t working,” says Brittney Nystrom, director of policy and legal affairs at the National Immigration Forum in Washington, D.C. But beyond that starting premise, views on immigration laws start to splinter.

“On both sides of this debate, there are deeply held beliefs about what immigration means to America,” says Nystrom. “On one side, you have the idea that we’re a nation of immigrants, and it’s healthy and important to keep that tradition alive. On the other side, you have the argument that immigrants are a burden. Trying to factually discuss immigration becomes almost impossible when people tend to fall into one camp or the other based on what they’re told.” Read more...

Published in the ABA Journal

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The International Exchange Center of the American Immigration Council serves as a State Department designated third party sponsor for J-1 trainees and interns. We assist you through the application process and offer support and guidance for the duration of the trainee or intern program.


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Deferred deportation program ready to begin accepting applications

Published on Fri, Aug 10, 2012

Cronkite News listed IPC statistics in an article about the deferred deportation program preparing to accept applications on August 15, 2012.  The numbers come from IPC's "Who and Where the DREAMers Are," and breaks down the numbers of eligible immigrants living in Arizona by congressional district: Read more...

Published in the Cronkite News

Stephen K. Fischel

Stephen K. Fischel commenced his government career in January 1974 with the Foreign Operations Division of the Passport Office, U.S. Department of State. He then transferred in 1975 to the Advisory Opinions Division in the Visa Office, also, of the Bureau of Consular Affairs at State.

Upon assuming the deputy division chief 's position in 1981, he entered the immigration community as a speaker and representative of the Visa Office. As Chief of the Legislation and Regulations Division in the mid 1980s, Mr. Fischel assumed responsibility for legislative policy for the Visa Office.

In 1997, he became the Director of the Office of Legislation, Regulations, and Advisory Assistance. In 1999, with the absorption of USIA, he received the Waiver Review Division under his responsibility. Over the following several years, he introduced technology (online status checks, online applications, etc.) into the process. Providing the division with more human resources and specifically designed case file control system, backlogs were eliminated as processing times were greatly reduced.

In 2001, the Assistant Secretary and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs asked Mr. Fischel to participate on the President's Bilateral Migration Talks with Mexico. He provided many options to address the "regularization" of undocumented Mexicans, crafted a framework for a bilateral Temporary Worker Program, and designed significant reform to the H-2B program. He continued involvement in this area as State's representative on the President's revised Temporary Worker Program until retirement.Read more...

The IPC's Mary Giovagnoli in the Christian Science Monitor

Published on Thu, Apr 25, 2013

The IPC's Director, Mary Giovagnoli, was quoted in a recent article in the Christian Science Monitor on what could be expected from the new reform package from the Senate:

"Pro-reform analysts say that’s a good thing: The bill is replacing illegal workers with legal ones, these advocates argue, thus allowing American employers legally to meet legitimate business needs and uniting families kept apart by poorly fashioned immigration laws.

“You’re having to play catch-up for 20 years of neglect of this system,” says Mary Giovagnoli, director of the Immigration Policy Center and a former aide to the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D) of Massachusetts during the 2007 immigration reform effort.

Without creating a functional (and larger) legal immigration system, they say, the lures for illegal immigration will remain."

Published in the Christian Science Monitor

Andrea Guttin, Esq.

Andrea Guttin, Esq. is an attorney currently residing in Austin, Texas. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and holds a J.D. and an M.A in Latin American Studies. She would like to thank Diego Garcia‐Olano for creating the database and inputting arrestee data, without which any analysis would have been impossible.

AIC Executive Director Ben Johnson in the Roanoke Times

Published on Mon, Sep 30, 2013

The AIC's Executive Director, Ben Johnson, had an op-ed titled "The High Cost of Inaction" published in Virginia's Roanoke Times.  In it, he draws attention to the recent IPC Fact Sheet, "The Cost of Doing Nothing:  Dollars, Lives, and Opportunities Lost in the Wait for Immigration Reform," released last week. 

"Yet, three months after the Senate passed immigration reform legislation (S. 744), the House of Representatives continues to dawdle. Other than giving speeches and mulling over a few backward-looking, enforcement-only bills, the House has done nothing to revamp the broken U.S. immigration system or put forward any vision of what to do with the 11 million unauthorized immigrants now living in the United States — 210,000 of whom call Virginia home. The standard excuse for this inaction is that there are too many other high-priority items on the legislative agenda right now — so immigration reform will have to wait.

"But while Congress waits, dollars and lives are being lost."

Published in the Roanoke Times

Margaret D. Stock, Esq.

Margaret D. Stock is an attorney in Anchorage, Alaska; a Lieutenant Colonel in the Military Police Corps, U.S. Army Reserve; and an Associate Professor (Drilling Individual Mobilization Augmentee) in the Department of Social Sciences at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, New York.  She is a recipient of the 2013 MacArthur Genius Grant. The opinions expressed in this report are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the U.S. Military Academy, the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense, or any other government agency.

NY Times Highlights Immigration Council Lawsuit Challenging Tactics at Immigrant Detention Center

Published on Fri, Aug 22, 2014

The New York Times recently highlighted a lawsuit filed by the American Immigration Council and other groups challenging the governments policies of denying a fair deportation process to mothers and children who have fled extreme violence, death threats, rape, and persecution in Central America and come to the United States seeking safety.

The article states:

"The lawsuit, brought in Federal District Court in Washington, says that immigration authorities created a system to rush deportations from the temporary center holding about 600 mothers and their children in the isolated desert town of Artesia, N.M. The suit accuses officials of raising numerous legal and practical hurdles to discourage migrants from seeking asylum, after deciding in advance that few petitions would succeed.

'By locking up women and babies, the Obama administration has made it their mission to deport these people as quickly as possible,' said Marielena Hincapie, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, one of the groups bringing the suit. 'Our message to the government is simple: Follow the law,' she said during a conference call with reporters. 'We must ensure that every person who interacts with our legal system has a fair hearing.'Read more...

Published in the New York Times

The LAC Docket | Volume III, Issue 2

The Newsletter of the American Immigration Council’s Legal Action Center

April 10, 2013
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OUR WORK

Enforcement



   Enforcement

DACA Developments

In February, the LAC welcomed its DACA Legal Services Fellow, Patrick Taurel.  Patrick comes to the LAC from Andrade Legal in Boise, Idaho, where he focused on complex removal cases.  Patrick works with the LAC and AILA’s Practice and Professionalism Center to develop, implement and oversee the provision of pro bono legal services to low-income DACA requesters.  This includes building relationships with key pro bono stakeholders, including AILA chapter chairs and pro bono liaisons; coordinating and assisting in training volunteer attorneys; compiling and drafting training materials to assist AILA chapters and volunteer law firms to develop effective pro bono training; and assisting in organizing DACA pro bono clinics around the country.Read more...