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Entrepreneurship and Innovation Update - May 15, 2014

Read our previous Entrepreneurship and Innovation Newsletters here.

Latest Research

Report reaffirms the economic case for welcoming immigrant entrepreneurs. A May 1 post on Immigration Impact highlighted an updated report from the Kauffman Foundation reaffirming that immigrant entrepreneurial activity is greater than that of the native-born population. As an article in Inc.com notes, “immigrants drove much of the new entrepreneurial activity at a rate nearly twice as high as U.S. natives.”Read more...

Once Again, Congress Pursues Costly E-Verify Legislation to the Peril of U.S. Economy

Released on Tue, Jun 14, 2011

Washington D.C. - On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration Policy and Enforcement will hold a hearing on the “Legal Workforce Act,” another enforcement-only bill introduced today by Judiciary Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX). The bill would make the electronic employment verification system “E-Verify” mandatory for all employers within two years (three for agriculture). Much like the other hearings conducted by the Subcommittee this year, Wednesday’s hearing is likely to promote tougher enforcement and more deportations as the solution to immigration reform, rather than offer a thoughtful analysis of what must be done to create an effective immigration system that stimulates our economy and supports workers and businesses.

E-Verify is a web-based technology that allows employers to check federal databases to determine whether their employees—U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, and other foreign-born workers—are authorized to work in the U.S. While USCIS has made significant improvements in E-Verify, many problems still exist. An independent evaluation found that E-Verify is unable to identify unauthorized workers in half of the cases. At a time when the U.S. needs to stimulate its economy and create jobs, mandatory E-Verify will impose additional regulations and costs on businesses, and employers will have to fire U.S. citizens who are erroneously indentified as unauthorized to work. Read more...

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LAC Issues Updated Practice Advisory on DHS’s Plan to Review Removal Cases for Prosecutorial Discretion

Released on Mon, Dec 12, 2011

Washington, D.C.— The American Immigration Council’s Legal Action Center (LAC) is pleased to announce the release of an updated practice advisory: "DHS Review of Low Priority Cases for Prosecutorial Discretion." On August 18, 2011, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the establishment of a joint DHS-Department of Justice (DOJ) working group charged with reviewing the approximately 300,000 cases pending before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) to identify candidates for administrative closure. Subsequently, on November 17, 2011, DHS issued three documents detailing how the agency will implement the review process, which includes the launch of two pilot projects. This practice advisory summarizes information that is known to date about the review and discusses some of the ambiguities and contradictions that the recent announcements have created.

For a complete list of all LAC Practice Advisories, please visit our website.

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For questions contact Brian Yourish at byourish@immcouncil.org or 202-507-7516.

 

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Hispanic immigrants vital to economy

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 Latino Business Review

AIC Applauds Ruling Allowing Immigration Judges to Consider Evidence of Hardship

Released on Mon, Sep 17, 2012

American Immigration Council Applauds Ruling
Allowing Immigration Judges to Consider Evidence of Hardship

Washington, D.C.—Last Friday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued a unanimous ruling that will allow immigration judges to exercise discretion in cases involving lawful permanent residents (LPRs) whose removal would cause extreme hardship to family members in the United States. The ruling marks the fourth opinion from a federal appellate court to reject a contrary decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals. The American Immigration Council’s Legal Action Center, which filed an amicus brief in the case and participated in the oral argument, applauds today’s ruling and calls on the Board to overturn its decision in Matter of Koljenovic, 25 I&N Dec. 219 (2010).

The case involved a 1996 amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act that prevents immigration judges from considering evidence of hardship in certain cases involving immigrants who were “admitted” to the United States as LPRs. For many LPRs facing removal, the ability to obtain such a hardship waivers is the only means to avoid separation from U.S. family members. In its amicus brief, the Council argued that the Board ignored the plain language of the statute and improperly conflated applicants who entered the country as LPRs with those who gained LPR status post-entry.

The beneficiary of today’s decision, Zaman Hanif, has resided in the United States for more than 25 years. The Department of Homeland Security initiated removal proceedings against him in 2009 based on a criminal conviction that resulted in four months’ incarceration. Hanif sought a waiver of inadmissibility on account of the hardship his removal would create for his immediate family members, including his wife, two elderly parents, and U.S. citizen children.Read more...

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Guatemalan janitor in R.I. wins permanent residency

Published on Sat, Oct 03, 2009

Gustavo Cabrera, one of 31 janitors arrested last year in a high-profile raid on state courthouses, yesterday won the right to remain permanently in the United States, based on a 1997 law that legal experts say has provided relief to fewer than 200,000 people.

Published in the The Providence Journal

Senate Floor Debate Must Maintain Spirit of Compromise

And Adhere to Certain Principles to Ensure A Workable System

Released on Tue, Jun 11, 2013

Washington D.C. – Today, the long-awaited opportunity to reform the country’s dysfunctional immigration system moves one step closer to reality as the full Senate begins consideration of S. 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act. The Senate Judiciary Committee set a high standard for civility and transparency during its markup of the bill last month, and we urge the full Senate to continue in this vein. The bill that emerged from committee offers a workable plan that takes a balanced approach to immigration reform. Evidence, rather than grandstanding and rhetoric, should drive the debate on the Senate floor. Common sense and good policy can trump political one-upmanship, as long as Senators keep the following principles in mind.Read more...

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Report Extols Economic Benefits of Immigration Reform: Comprehensive immigration reform that creates a pathway to legalization would help American workers and the U.S. economy

Published on Thu, Jan 07, 2010

Legalizing undocumented workers via comprehensive immigration reform would yield $1.5 trillion to the U.S. GDP over a ten year period, generate billions in additional tax revenue and consumer spending, as well as create hundreds of thousands of jobs, according to a groundbreaking new study by Dr. Raúl Hinojosa-Ojeda from the University of California.

Published in the Poder Magazine

Understanding ICE’s Release of Immigrants with Criminal Convictions

Released on Thu, May 15, 2014

Washington D.C. - Understanding the complexities of immigration law and its intersection with criminal law is not easy. Over the past month, a flood of reports about enforcement policies and deportation data have compounded the confusion. Some of these reports were clearly designed to derail genuine and productive conversations around immigration policy reform. Case in point, this week the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) issued a paper that claims over 36,000 “criminal aliens” were released from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody.  

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Long, complex path to citizenship puts lives on hold

Published on Mon, Mar 08, 2010

Imad Doski applied for his U.S. citizenship five years ago with dreams of a high-dollar job translating Kurdish and Arabic.

Since then, the native of Iraq has discovered one private contractor pays U.S. citizens $60,000 more per year than other immigrants. Another only hires citizens.

"When you are a citizen, opportunities are different, pay is sometimes different, people sometimes look at you differently," said Doski, a Nashville bookkeeper.

 

Published in the The Tennessean