Monday, July 20, 2009

In Our Community: Immigration News

Immigration-related news from June 15 to June 20. Enjoy!

Some Senators used amendments to the Senate Appropriations Bill for fiscal year 2010 to show just how strong they could be on immigration, in anticipation of this fall's upcoming immigration debate that is sure to polarize members into enforcement and path to legalization camps. Republican Senators Vitter, Sessions, Grassley and DeMint all introduced enforcement-heavy amendments to the bill.

Here's a great overview of what we expect to see when the immigration debate heats up this fall. Includes advantages and disadvantages of the E-verify system, and where the major players will line up when the debate hits the floors of Senate and House this fall. For info on the REAL ID debate, this article has it all. Here's another article with details on the employee identification debate.

Julia Harumi Mass from the Sacramento Bee writes an impassioned plea for comprehensive immigration reform here.

A new decision by the Obama Administration makes it easier for foreign women who are victims of domestic abuse to gain asylum in the United States. This comes after 8 years of stasis from the Bush Administration, where immigration courts were theatres of inaction on the subject of battered women seeking refugee status.

On a related note, Department of Homeland Security has moved to expand the 287(g) program, which enlists local law enforcement to root out undocumented immigrants in counties across the U.S. Although the program has re-prioritized by making criminals migrants their most important targets and by providing nationwide oversight rules, the program may be bad news for victims of domestic abuse, who will be more reticent to report their grievances for fear of being deported or detained. The New York Daily News' Albor Ruiz weighs in on the 287(g) debate here. The ACLU opines on the 287(g) program here.

ICE reports here that deportations in Washington, Oregon and Alaska have jumped 10% in the last year, partly due to the Obama Administration's focus on deporting those immigrants with criminal records. Same thing in Maryland. A more personal deportation hearing about a Jamaican immigrant who was finally granted a hearing after 5 and half years in detention.

In Dobbs Ferry, NY, The Children's Village provides a home for undocumented minors. Jose's story is particularly worth reading.

In other detention news, a swine flu outbreak has required 72 detainess to be quarantined, causing many to miss important hearings, even if they might not be officially confirmed to have the virus.

A troubling new decision from the Supreme Court came down June 15, when the court unanimously decided against Manoj Nijhawan, who had been convicted of money laundering over $10,000. The new decision makes it easier for immigration officials to deport individuals based on information based on information not specificially determined by a judge or jury as grounds for a criminal conviction, thereby reducing the objective and consistent standards by which immigrant criminals can be deported.

Caddo Mills, TX considers letting Emerald Correctional Facilities build a 500 to 1,000 bed correctional facility.

Last but not least, the Sheriff Joe Arpaio charade continues here.

That's all folks. Thanks for reading.

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