TASK FORCE INFORMATION:
Our next meeting will be held on September 13. Stay tuned for details as to whether we will meet via Zoom or in person.
Food for thought: I have previously sent the following item, but it is not too early to begin thinking about following its suggestions. Let me know what you will be doing this coming year so we can plan an appropriate committee to meet your interests.
After attending a speech by a noted immigration attorney, a colleague e- mailed me with the following paragraph: “What stuck with me was the idea that to change the l aw, it required changing minds, from the individual, to the community, to elected officials. Litigation alone isn’t the answer. With this in mind, I hope that you will each consider taking on something new, maybe writing a letter to the editor of your local paper talking about the benefits of immigration, meeting with your elected officials about why change in policy is needed, or getting involved”
BIDEN ADMINISTRATION NEWS
On July 12, the House committee charged with funding the Department of Justice (DOJ) marked up its annual funding bill for DOJ and other agencies. Importantly, the bill includes a historic $50 million to develop and launch pilot programs to provide legal counsel for people in removal proceedings. This marks significant progress in efforts to win support for legal representation programs, which is among AILA’s top advocacy priorities for the year.
CNN reports that ICE has issued a new policy that states women known to be pregnant or nursing should not be detained, arrested, or taken into custody unless their release is prohibited by law or exceptional circumstances. The move is a shift away from the Trump administration, when immigration officers were directed to no longer default to trying to release pregnant women who fall into immigration custody. Immigrant advocates have repeatedly warned of the harms of detaining pregnant women and criticized the Trump administration for revoking previous policy limiting their detention. SEE: https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/09/politics/immigration-detention-pregnant-women/index.html?utm_
DACA: As most of you are aware, on July 16, a Federal judge found DACA unlawful, blocking new applicants. The following story from Politico is a good summary. SEE: https://www.politico.com/news/2021/07/16/texas-federal-judge-daca-applicants-499896
In addition, A CNN article discusses how the ruling underscores the human cost of congressional inaction. SEE: https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/17/politics/daca-ruling-human-cost-congressional-inaction/index.html?utm USCIS posted statements regarding the Texas v. United States decision, stating that DHS will continue to accept the filing of both initial and renewal DACA requests, as well as accompanying requests for employment authorization in accordance with the decision.
The Hill reports Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), a key moderate, said he supports including immigration provisions in a budget reconciliation bill, easing the path toward resolution on an issue that threatened to divide Democrats. As the most conservative Senate Democrat, Manchin’s support is critical to inclusion of any provision that ends up in the reconciliation bill. The budget reconciliation proposal, as currently funded, would include funding to grant a path to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants, including Dreamers, TPS beneficiaries, essential workers, and immigrant farmworkers. SEE: https://thehill.com/latino/563047-manchin-signals-support-for-immigration-in-budget-deal
Politico has an interesting article entitled “It’s Not a Border Crisis. It’s a Climate Crisis.” There was a time when rural Guatemalans never left home. But back to back hurricanes, failed crops and extreme poverty are driving them to make the dangerous trek north to the U.S. border. For the full discussion , SEE: https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/07/19/guatemala-immigration-climate-change-499281?utm
On July 24, the Boston Globe published an article entitled “Stoking Fears of Immigrants has been part of the Republican platform for decades. But something is different this time. SEE: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2021/07/24/nation/stoking-fears-immigrants-has-been-part-republican-platform-decades-something-is-different-this-time/