TASK FORCE MATTERS:  Our next meeting will be held on October 12th at 7:00pm.  An invitation will be sent with the zoom information shortly.

>> Roll Call reports that a report issued by the DHS Office of the Inspector General is casting doubt on DHS’s ability to protect its massive repository of personal data from hackers amid a push by the Trump administration to vastly expand its collection of biometrics through the use of facial recognition and other tools. The report found that a subcontractor hired to help CBP collect biometric data on border crossers violated DHS privacy policies, leading to data being obtained by hackers during a ransomware attack on the subcontractor’s servers. The report arrived at a tricky moment for DHS, which earlier this month proposed new regulations that would expand DHS’s collection of biometric data from both U.S. citizens and foreign nationals.  SEE: https://www.oig.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/assets/2020-09/OIG-20-71-Sep20.pdf

>>DHS OIG Says CBP Did Not Adequately Oversee FY2019 Appropriated Humanitarian Funding. DHS OIG released a report saying that CBP did not adequately use the funds it received in FY2019 to address the needs of migrants in custody. CBP did not ensure the funds were used to purchase items that met migrants’ basic needs and cannot account for funds provided for medical care for migrants. SEE: https://www.oig.dhs.gov/reports/2020/cbp-did-not-adequately-oversee-fy-2019-appropriated-humanitarian-funding/oig-20-78-sep20

>> The Hill reports that, according to sources, the Trump administration is preparing a series of immigration enforcement actions targeting sanctuary cities leading up to the November general election. Informally known as the “sanctuary op,” the ICE operation could reportedly begin as soon as this week in California and eventually move to cities including Denver and Philadelphia. Sources described the operation as more of a political stunt than a major operation.  Several other news organizations have reported similar information. SEE: https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/518838-trump-administration-preparing-targeted-ice-arrests-in-sanctuary?utm_

>> On October 2, The House was expected to vote  on a resolution introduced by Representative Jayapal (D-WA) with 224 cosponsors to condemn non-consensual unnecessary medical procedures performed on women in ICE detention, including at the Irwin facility in Ocilla, GA.

>> DOS announced that, together with HHS, it has submitted the President’s Report to Congress on the Proposed Refugee Admissions for FY2021. In FY2021, the United States will admit a maximum of 15,000 refugees through the Refugee Admissions Program.  The United States anticipates receiving more than 300,000 new refugees and asylum claims in Fiscal Year 2021. Of that number, up to 15,000 would be refugees admitted through the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program and more than 290,000 would be individuals in new asylum cases. The 15,000 ceiling of  refugee admissions  is down from FY 2020, when 18,000 refugee admissions was set by the president.  Of the 18,000 ceiling for FY 2020,refugee admissions actually totaled 11,814.

>> The New York Times reports that a federal judge ruled that President Trump overstepped his authority in suspending new visas for hundreds of thousands of foreign workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Judge Jeffrey White of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California temporarily blocked further implementation of Presidential Proclamation 10052 as it applied to thousands of companies seeking to bring workers to the United States on a wide array of visas.  SEE https://www.nytimes.com/2020/20/01/us/foreign-workers-visas-h-1b-trump.html?searchResultPosition=11&utm_

>> On October 7, the Boston Globe published an article entitled, “Justice pushed family breakups”.   Then Attorney General Sessions told US Attorneys along the border with Mexico that it was necessary to separate children, no matter how young, from their parents, in accord with the administration’s “zero tolerance”policy.  This is the conclusion of a draft report issued by the Department of Justice’s inspector general after a two year study.  (SEE: https://epaper.bostonglobe.com/html5/reader/production/default.aspx?pubname=&pubid=2c60291d-c20c-4780-9829-b3d9a12687cf ). 

            (My comment: Although not mentioned in the Globe article, it is well to remember that Immigration Judges serve at the pleasure of the Attorney General.  How fair a hearing in  the Immigration Court can be expected if that is the policy stated by the attorney general?  I suggest it is time we spend some efforts in seeking a truly independent     Immigration Court and judges not serving political interests.  I welcome your thoughts about discussing this issue at our next monthly meeting on October 12th.)

>>Please see the latest information from Families Belong Together from Georgina, attached.

>>MISN is seeking Spanish speaking volunteers to assist in ICE telephonic check in.
>> At My Neighbor’s Table submitted a program of interest.

I look forward to seeing you all next Monday.

Gerry Rovner