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AILA Doc. No. 19082737 | Dated September 20, 2019
On September 19, 2019, in a huge victory for the vulnerable individuals and families impacted, the Department of Homeland Security alerted members of the Oversight & Reform Committee that at the discretion of Acting Secretary McAleenan it would resume “consideration of non-military deferred action requests on a discretionary, case-by-case basis, except as otherwise required by an applicable statute, regulation, or court order.”
From the first reports of this change in policy, AILA and our members have played a significant role in shedding important light on this issue and those impacted, taking action by encouraging members of Congress to hold USCIS accountable, and sharing stories of the change’s implications on their clients. Our collective efforts have been crucial to the reversal of this policy.
AILA is continuing to monitor this reversal and its implementation, and will update members with additional information as it is provided.
Effective August 7, 2019, USCIS is no longer adjudicating requests for non-military "deferred action," a form of temporary relief from deportation for immigrants facing special and often life-threatening circumstances. Instead, ICE will assume exclusive responsibility for deferred action requests but the letters that recipients received make no mention of a process to request assistance from ICE. This policy shift—which occurred without public notice—places vulnerable individuals at risk of deportation and even death, violates principles of fundamental fairness, and will deter many families from pursuing vital immigration relief.
This webpage explains the policy change and its implications, shares ways that members of the public can take action to oppose the measure and identifies further helpful resources.
Cite as AILA Doc. No. 19082737.