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Arizona demonstrates the lunacy of mass deportations

Published on Wed, Mar 30, 2011

WHEN ARIZONA lawmakers enacted legislation last year inflating the power of police officers to check immigration status when they make even routine stops, they staked out a reputation for the state as a citadel of intolerance. That was by design, for their explicit purpose was to drive away the hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants who, lured by jobs and a booming economy, had arrived in the state in the preceding 10 or 15 years.

The law, hung up by constitutional challenges, has never taken full effect. But it has had an important unintended consequence — as a wake-up call to the nation’s business community, for which a policy aimed at deporting millions of undocumented workers is economic lunacy.

Thanks largely to a backlash from business, state legislatures elsewhere have balked at adopting Arizona-style laws, though a few, particularly in the South, have passed bills designed to deny opportunities to illegal immigrants and keep them in the shadows. The business backlash is motivated partly by fears that other states could suffer Arizona’s fate: boycotts and cancellations that have meant tens of millions of dollars in lost revenue for hotels, restaurants and other businesses that rely on visitors. But businesses also fear the potential economic damage from mass deportation. A new report by the Center for American Progress and the Immigration Policy Center, groups that are sympathetic to illegal immigrants but intellectually serious, examines those costs in detail and concludes that they would be staggering.Read more...

Published in the Washington Post

Litigation Clearinghouse Newsletter Vol. 4, No. 14

This issue covers the Supreme Court’s grant of certiorari in an immigration case involving whether a second drug possession offense is an aggravated felony, a new LAC resource on motions to suppress, favorable court of appeals’ decisions on detention and crimes of violence, and res judicata in removal proceedings.

Published On: Wednesday, December 23, 2009 | Download File

Can Winnipeg model save Detroit?

Published on Sat, May 21, 2011

Detroit has become the poster child for urban decay. The city lost 25 per cent of its population between 2000 and 2010, and more than half its population since 1950. More than 90,000 houses stand empty, and many neighborhoods have been completely abandoned.

The burden of maintaining infrastructure and law enforcement in a city with an eroding tax base and sparse population has led to attempts to "shrink" the city. This means bulldozing several areas of the city and relocating existing residents. Mayor Dave Bing realizes this, and has pledged to knock down a staggering 10,000 structures during his first term.

In the past, such slum clearances led to vigorous opposition from urbanists like Jane Jacobs, who argued that top-down approaches to urban redevelopment would cause a great deal of pain for little to no benefit. Yet despite the fact that Jacobs is widely admired, the plan to shrink the city has met with little opposition in Detroit. Frankly, unless Detroit sees a major population surge, shrinking the city sadly may be necessary.

Last week, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg appeared on NBC's Meet the Press, and mused about using immigration policy to repopulate the city. The premise makes perfect sense. Most of Detroit's problems stem from the fact that fewer and fewer people are working and paying taxes in the city. There is more infrastructure than people need or the city can afford.

Ultimately the issue then is getting people to live in Detroit. But the biggest problem, even with a mild resurgence in the auto sector, is that Americans, and even most Michiganders, don't want to live in Detroit, even with jobs.

For many immigrants, however, Detroit would seem like a major upgrade over their current situations. This is not a far-fetched notion. Here's a proposal for Detroit based on an unlikely Canadian immigration success story: Winnipeg.Read more...

Published in the Winnepeg Free Press

Noncitizens with Mental Competency Issues in Removal Proceedings

ARCHIVED ISSUE PAGE (LAST UPDATED AUGUST 2012)

In contrast to the criminal system, virtually no safeguards exist in removal proceedings for respondents with mental disabilities. Each year, untold numbers of noncitizens with mental disabilities are ordered deported without access to counsel or any assessment of their cognitive capabilities. The issue has taken on greater urgency following extensive reports of the challenges that immigrants with mental disabilities face in removal proceedings, as well as alarming accounts of the mistaken deportation of U.S. citizens with mental disabilities. This page contains summaries of recent and ongoing cases regarding the rights of noncitizens with mental disabilities.

Latest Developments | Additional Resources

Latest Developments

Board Establishes Framework for Addressing Competency Issues
Matter of M-A-M-, 25 I&N Dec. 474 (BIA 2011)
Read more...

Yohei Nagata Ken-do Anything!

July, 2008
Yohei Nagata

The Exchange Visitor Program is pleased to announce Yohei Nagata as July's Exchange Visitor of the Month. Each month, we select an exchange visitor who has made an effort to get involved in his/her community, explore American culture or share in his/her own culture. Read more...

Study: Fewer Mexicans migrating to United States

Published on Tue, Aug 02, 2011

PHOENIX - While illegal immigration has dominated a portion of political dialogue in the United States over the last few years, fewer Mexicans are crossing the border according to a new study.

"About 60 percent fewer people are coming to the United States from Mexico," said Wendy Sefsaf with the Immigration Policy Center. The center uses Mexican nationals as a proxy because they are a large part of the undocumented population, Sefsaf said.

The reason that fewer people are looking to head across the border is the downtrodden economy.

"The reason why people are not coming is the economy," Sefsaf said. "That's always been the case. Migration from Mexico for 100 years has been impacted the economic conditions in the receiving countries."

Data from the Pew Hispanic Center and the Rand Corporation also revealed that fewer immigrants are leaving the country and those that are in the United States have likely been here for more than a decade, showing a need for a more nuanced set of policies to help immigrants integrate fully into American society, Sefsaf said.

Published in the KTAR Arizona

Court Affirms Ninth Circuit Ruling in Citizenship Case

Flores-Villar v. United States, 564 U. S. ___, 131 S. Ct. 2312, (2011)

The Supreme Court affirmed the Ninth Circuit’s decision in a case involving whether two former citizenship provisions in the INA violate equal protection. These sections imposed a five-year residence requirement, after the age of fourteen, on U.S. citizen fathers -- but not on U.S. citizen mothers -- before they may transmit citizenship to a child born out of wedlock abroad to a noncitizen. Read more...

Exchange Visitor of the Month

April, 2013

Carla Parzianello is a J-1 trainee in Human Resources Management from Brazil. During her time at YMCA of the Rockies in Colorado, Carla has reached out to local Americans to share her culture. She has organized events for adults and spoken to kids in local schools. Check out her tips on how you can do the same!

Read more...

Undocumented College Students Rally For Public Financial Aid

Published on Wed, Sep 28, 2011

Two dozen college students rallied Werdnesday afternoon outside the San Francisco office of Gov. Jerry Brown, who has until Oct. 9 to either sign or veto a bill that would allow undocumented students to receive public financial aid for higher education.

The students, joined by a member of the City College of San Francisco Board of Trustees, took part in a statewide day of action designed to pressure Brown into signing the bill, AB 131, the second half of the California Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors, or DREAM, Act.

In July, Brown signed AB 130, a bill allowing undocumented students to receive private scholarships.

If he signs the second bill, undocumented students attending public higher educational institutions who qualify for the exemption from non-resident tuition would be eligible to receive financial aid at the state's public colleges and universities.

Currently, undocumented students cannot receive state or federal financial aid.

According to the Immigration Policy Center, although some 65,000 undocumented students graduate from high school, only 5 to 10 percent continue onto college, with many unable to continue for financial reasons or because schools do not allow them to enroll.

Several students, identified only by their first names for their protection, shared stories at the rally about their college experiences.

Through choked tears, Catherine spoke of how she had been a fourth-year political science student at the University of California at Berkeley but had to drop out the semester she was to graduate because she could not afford to finish.

"Sign this bill as if your own children needed it," she said, urging Brown to take action. "Undocumented students are under attack and California can be the beacon of hope."Read more...

Published in the The San Francisco Appeal