On the other side, the Immigration Policy Center, a nonprofit group in Washington, D.C., says legalizing the 11.1 million undocumented immigrants would increase the country's gross domestic product by $1.5trillion over 10 years.
This issue covers the Supreme Court's decision to hear a fraud offense case, important developments in the Duran-Gonzales and surviving spouse class actions, updates on the Orozco and Matter of Silva-Trevino decisions, and outreach and resources related to the AG's ineffective assistance of counsel decision Matter of Compean.
The United States ranks ninth out of 31 countries in an international study evaluating immigrant integration policies released this week.
The Migrant Integration Policy Index (aka MIPEX), produced by the British Council and the Migration Policy Group, evaluates seven areas: labor market mobility, family reunion, education, political participation, long-term residence, access to nationality and anti-discrimination measures in all European Union member states plus Norway, Switzerland, Canada and for the first time the U.S.
The Immigration Policy Center, the research and policy arm of the American Immigration Council, served as a U.S partner for the study, and helped answer questions and gather information from various American expert.
The study indicates that strong U.S. anti-discrimination laws protect immigrants and guarantee them equal rights and opportunities, a model for immigration rules elsewhere.
Mary Giovagnoli, director of the Immigration Policy Center, told The Florida Independent that the U.S invests very little in immigrant integration and that budget cuts at the state and federal level put the country’s positive ranking at risk. She added that policymakers need to know that helping people to integrate and learn English provides a large return on investment.
Giovagnoli explained that the MIPEX study can help guide best practices, so the U.S. can learn from other countries like Canada that have a thoughtful integration policy, and help other countries learn from areas where the U.S. shows positive advances.
According to the study, U.S legal status gives most migrant workers and their families some of the same chances in the labor market as native-born Americans, but immigrants often take jobs far below their skill level.Read more...
It's a familiar refrain: Undocumented immigrants come to the United States, contribute nothing and benefit handsomely from the Nanny State. And it's dead wrong.
In fact, according to estimates by the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy and the Immigration Policy Center, households headed by undocumented immigrants paid more than $157 million in sales and property taxes here in Tennessee in 2010. Nationwide, they paid an estimated $11 billion in state and local taxes.
A 2005 Economic Report to the President points out that half of all undocumented immigrants are "believed to be working on the books," meaning they contribute to the tax rolls but remain ineligible for nearly every federal public assistance program. Even if their employer withholds Social Security taxes, they'll never benefit from a system they pay into.
Tennessee lawmakers are proposing legislation this session that would seek to make every facet of life in the state even more inhospitable for undocumented immigrants (see Thursday's Scene). But they might consider the numbers, especially this one: Tennessee ranks 14th on the list of 50 for most taxes paid by those with no legal right to be here.
The class action lawsuit, which we prepared but ultimately did not have to file, argued that the government must comply with its own regulations and policies and accept the "green card" applications of tens of thousands of intending immigrants.
The Legal Action Center was poised to file a lawsuit on July 17, 2007 but because the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of State (DOS) resolved the issues, we did not have to file the suit. The LAC prepared the class action lawsuit, which alleged that the federal government's refusal to accept tens of thousands of applications for green cards (and discouragement of thousands of other workers from even applying) violated federal statutes, regulations and policies, as well as the U.S. Constitution. The suit would have argued that the government must comply with its own regulations and policies and accept the adjustment of status ("green card") applications. AILF is pleased that the DHS and DOS allowed intending immigrants to file applications for adjustment of status until and including August 17, 2007. They also allowed these applicants to pay the fee amounts that were in effect before the increase on July 30th, 2007.
LAC Welcomes Government Reversal on Permanent Resident Applications ("Green Cards") (July 19, 2007)
The Legal Action Center is pleased that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of State (DOS) have announced they will comply with their own regulations and policies and accept the "green card" applications of tens of thousands of intending immigrants. A class action lawsuit scheduled to be filed by the LAC on July 17, 2007 on behalf of all affected intending immigrants argued that the government must do exactly that. See the LAC's complaint. The LAC is gratified that the government accepted our arguments and belatedly is doing what it should have done in the first place.Read more...
The month of September brings the Health&Fitness issue of J-1 JOURNEYS. In this edition, we answer the important question, "What Is My J-1 Visa?", give advice on staying fit at the office, and talk about how to approach your supervisors for direct feedback.
This week Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick joined a growing chorus of governors standing up against the federal government’s immigration enforcement agenda when he announced that he would not enter his state into Secure Communities. The program, which is supposed to target immigrants who commit serious crimes for deportation, has been controversial in that it has deported streams of people, both documented and undocumented, who were convicted of minor offenses or, in some cases, none at all.
The Department of Homeland Security responded to Gov. Patrick by immediately slamming the door on the state’s efforts to keep out of the program. An anonymous DHS official told the Boston Globe that the state’s participation is not optional. Immigrant rights advocates say DHS is setting itself up for a legal fight over what’s quickly becoming its most controversial immigration enforcement program.
“The tide is turning on S‐Comm,” said Pablo Alvarado, the executive director of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, which is coordinating a national effort to dismantle Secure Communities. “A chorus of opposition to the program is growing louder as the migrant rights movement demands a reversal of politics that criminalize immigrants.”
Under Secure Communities, local authorities mush share the fingerprints of anyone booked in a local or county jail with federal immigration authorities. People without immigration documents and documented immigrants with prior criminal convictions get marked for deportation proceedings, even if they’re never charged with or convicted of a crime. The controversial and rapidly expanding program has become the marquee immigration enforcement program of the Obama administration’s deportation agenda. It’s currently operating in 42 states, and the administration hopes to expand it to the entire country by 2013.Read more...