The minutes from the September meeting are attached.  Please send me any corrections.

>>. The Work and Family Mobility Bill (driver’s licenses for undocumented) is languishing in the MA Senate Ways and Means Committee after receiving a favorable vote in the Transportation Committee on April 21, 2020. Thanks to Bill Okerman, a  list of the Committee Members can be found at https://malegislature.gov/Bills/191/S2641. You may wish to call the members of the committee, scroll to the list of members and then call their office to register your feelings. Sen Rush, one of Needham’s Senators is a member of the committee.  Once you access the committee list, click on the name of the Senator, and you will be directed to the office address and tel#.

>>The Safe Communities Coalition is looking for volunteers to join a phone bank, calling legislators to seek favorable votes.  See below for further information.

>>CNN Reports that a federal judge ruled that Chad Wolf is likely unlawfully serving as acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security and temporarily barred the Trump administration from enforcing new asylum restrictions, according to court documents, Judge Paula Xinis, issued a 69-page ruling on Sept 11. The Trump administration appealed a federal judge’s ruling earlier this year that it was also unlawful to appoint Chad Cuccinelli to lead Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which is  responsible for processing US immigration requests, and he remains in that post more than six months later. (SEE:  https://www.cnn.com/2020/09/14/politics/judge-chad-wolf/index.html utm_term=1600138129093131dbaaabbaf&utm_source=Breaking+News&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=155001&bt_ee=cuLGpCWvv0vkU9kkeqVqh5b3WWPnWa6pt74U%2FqnQCk7Pvk5MReF4S%2BFdFuv9qyFF&bt_ts=1600138129095)

>>NPR reports that on Sept 14,  a Federal Court of Appeals panel ruled that the Trump administration can end humanitarian protections for some 300,000 immigrants living in the United States, clearing the way for their potential deportation starting next year.

The 9th Circuit Appeals Court’s decision affects citizens from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua and Sudan, many of whom have lived in the U.S. for decades, have U.S.-born children and have been considered essential workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

At issue is the termination of temporary protected status, (TPS) a form of humanitarian relief created by Congress and administered by the Department of Homeland Security. It is highly likely that a further appeal to the full circuit will be filed. (SEE:  https://www.npr.org/2020/09/14/912900167/court-rules-government-can-end-humanitarian-protections-for-some-300-000-immigra )

>> AILA reports the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York declared that President Trump’s July 21, 2020, memo titled “Excluding Illegal Aliens from the Apportionment Base Following the 2020 Census” was an unlawful exercise of the authority granted to the president by Congress by statute. The court enjoined the defendants—other than the president himself—from including in the secretary of commerce’s report to the president pursuant to 13 USC §141(a)-(b) any information concerning the number of non-citizens in each state who are not in a lawful immigration status under the INA. (State of New York, et al. v. Trump, et al., 9/10/20)

>>CA9 Vacates Injunction Barring ICE from Issuing Detainers Based Solely on Electronic Database Checks: The court reversed and vacated the US District Court for the Central District of California’s permanent injunction barring ICE from issuing detainers to class members based solely on searches of electronic databases to make probable cause determinations of removability, concluding that three errors required reversal: (1) the district court’s incomplete set of reliability findings; (2) the district court’s legal error in concluding that the databases are unreliable; and (3) the district court’s failure to address whether there was systemic error in ICE’s probable cause determinations based on searches of the databases. However the court remanded for the district court to reconsider the claim, including by making additional findings of fact as are necessary to properly resolve it.  In addition, The court also reversed and vacated the district court’s injunction prohibiting ICE from issuing detainers to law enforcement agencies in states that lack state law authorizing civil immigration arrests based on detainers, reasoning that the presence or absence of probable cause determines whether the government violates the Fourth Amendment when issuing a detainer, not state law restrictions.

>>. AILA and NPR report that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is pledging to dismantle the sweeping changes that President Trump has made to the  immigration system if he wins the election in November. His position paper on immigration — 51 bullet points that fill 22 pages — seeks to roll back Trump’s actions and reenact Obama-era policies. Over the past 45 months, immigration agents have enjoyed extraordinary support from an administration that has bragged about “unshackling” them to let them do their jobs more aggressively. Angela Kelley, Senior Adviser to AILA, told NPR “You can’t change culture within an organization that vast overnight … it’s going to be a long, long road.”

>>AILA and the American Immigration Council are calling on Congress to initiate an immediate and thorough investigation into conditions and medical care at ICE detention centers following the disturbing news reports yesterday about the lack of COVID-19 protections and inadequate medical care, including a report that a number of women detained at the Irwin detention center in Ocilla, Georgia, were unnecessarily subjected to hysterectomies. AILA Executive Director Benjamin Johnson noted, “AILA and the Council, through our Immigration Justice Campaign, have documented egregious medical negligence within ICE facilities in recent years.” He added, “If after a full investigation, [the recent] allegations prove to be true, all measures must be taken to seek justice for the victims and hold DHS leadership fully accountable. For Talking Points issued by AILA see attachment below.

>>  Consider adding your name to Georgina’s email distribution list. It is a source of great information and comes out too late for me to include many of the items in my Friday “From the Chair” news.  (georgina@somaptandrehab.com)

>>Driving Families Forward Rally. After months of organizing district meetings, actions, and demanding for the passage of the Work & Family Mobility Act – thousands of Black and Brown immigrant families continue to live in fear of ICE detention for being stopped for a traffic violation and many are being deported – even during a pandemic. All families deserve the right to move freely in our state and live in dignity. On September 26th, we are holding legislators accountable to support expanding access to driver’s licenses across the Commonwealth.

WHEN: Saturday, September 26th    TIME: 2:00 PM. WHERE: Meet us outside the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) located at 136 Blackstone St, Boston (by the Haymarket T Station). We will march to the JFK building and we will then end our march at the State House for a short speaking program and rally. Marchers should be masked and socially distant. Can’t make an in-person rally? Watch the event on Facebok live here: https://www.facebook.com/events/3306616586122711

>> MISN Meeting ~ Obstacles Immigrants Face in Challenging Wage Theft Tuesday, September 29th, 7pm via Zoom. Join us via Zoom for this meeting. Password is justice. https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85135292238?pwd=U2MwVmdmcGc4UEhGRWp5WWJGRTA2UT09

>>Greater Boston Interfaith Organization sent an email regarding a Zoom meeting this week as a followup to a July meeting with Rep Garlick and Linski, which I have attached below

Stay well,
Gerry Rovner