Will 2020 be a repeat of the past year for immigrants and their families?
No immigrant rights advocate wants a repeat of 2019.
The invisible wall of exclusion continued to be politically and legally erected by the Legion Of Xenophobia piece by piece.
Is Canada the TPS solution?
A few days ago, Samuel, a client from Haiti, visited my San Bernardino immigration office. He wanted to talk about the future of the Temporary Protected Status program.
He worried that winning permanent residency was not in the cards. Samuel knew about the latest efforts to derail the TPS path to green cards through marriage.
Fearing deportation and a forced return to his home country, he confided he had been working on Plan B.
As you’re likely aware, the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program has been the top immigration news story this week.
Commonly known as DACA, the fear is that over 700,000 immigrant youth will face deportation if the Supreme Court rules in favor of the Trump Administration.
Win, lose, or draw, the Supreme Court decision will not be the final word.
Sometimes the best defense is a good offense.
Take the current situation facing Temporary Protected Status beneficiaries.
Over 300,000 individuals who have TPS status are at risk for deportation if the Trump Administration scraps the program in the near future.
Rumors abound such a decision will be abruptly made, with limited, if any, advance warning.
For now, such action is on hold due to various court cases opposing the Adminstration’s plans to terminate TPS for several countries.
Once the courts render their decisions, all bets are off.
A few weeks ago, USCIS announced that I-130 petitions can now be filed via the internet.
The I-130, known as the Petition For Alien Relative, is the first step in the green card process. Its purpose is to prove the family relationship between a U.S. citizen or green card holder and an immigrant relative.
Most news stories note how this development speeds up the green card process. They portray the change as a positive, pro-immigrant measure.
The new filing procedure is a step in the right direction. Yet, the change warrants cautious optimism for immigrants and their families.
For several years, fixing our immigration system has been a hot political topic.
Building a border wall has been at the forefront of most Congressional proposals. Several representatives tout it as the primary cure for an overflow of immigrants trying to enter our country without legal documents.
This approach is short-sighted.
It negects the main component necessary for constructive immigration reform.
Sponsoring family members to live in the U.S. has been a central tenet of immigration law for over 50 years.
Contrary to chain migration rhetoric, immigration rules do not facilitate expedited passage of unlimited numbers of distant relatives through America’s ports of entry.
Rather, family-based applicants from abroad experience a slow and tedious process.
Over 28% of immigrants granted green cards from abroad last year had been waiting 10 years or longer for their interviews.
Sound a little harsh?
Good. I have your attention.
If you work with a notario, you’re likely ready to pounce on every word I write.
Perhaps reading my title, your ears perked up like a poodle sensing potential danger nearby.
Allow me to explain.
Historians will tell you the Cold War officially ended several decades ago.
Only not between Cuba and the United States.
Even today, as the back-and-forth diplomatice dance illustrates, harsh feelings and distrust between the two nations still linger.
Overcoming 60+ years of a politically severed relationship is not a simple task.
At a recent green card interview, the officer asked my client, “Why did you return home in 1985 and 1988?”
“To give birth to my two children,” she responded.
“I couldn’t afford the health care here.”
The officer gave me a confused, dazed look.
I couldn’t bite my lip.
“Sort of kills the anchor baby rhetorical nonsense, doesn’t it?”