AILA welcomed the rescission of the regulatory framework for the discriminatory National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS), with AILA President William A. Stock noting that it “wasted millions of taxpayer dollars and caused unnecessary harm to thousands.”
AILA, represented by the American Immigration Council and Foley & Lardner LLP, filed a lawsuit to compel U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) compliance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), and to request release of the CBP Officer’s Reference Tool (ORT).
AILA welcomed the introduction of the “Bar Removal of Immigrants who Dream and Grow the Economy” or BRIDGE Act, a bipartisan bill authored by Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) intended to offer temporary protection from deportation and a work permit for DACA-eligible individuals.
The CARA Family Detention Project highlights Texas Judge Karin Crump’s ruling that childcare licenses could not be issued for the Karnes City and Dilley, Texas, family detention centers. While the government has appealed her decision, the CARA project partners call for the end to family detention.
AILA raised concerns about the nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions for Attorney General, with AILA President Bill Stock noting that the role “has a tremendous impact within our justice system, including responsibility for administration of the immigration courts throughout the United States.”
AILA called upon President-elect Trump to unify our nation, turn away from the divisive campaign rhetoric on immigration, and work together on immigration reform. AILA also affirmed its commitment “to defending the Constitution and standing up against laws and policies that violate due process.”
AILA, the Council, and CLINIC welcomed the unanimous conclusion from the DHS Advisory Committee on Family Residential Centers that “detention is generally neither appropriate nor necessary for families” and urged DHS to adopt the recommendations immediately.
AILA is disappointed with today’s Supreme Court decision denying the request for a rehearing in United States v. Texas; AILA President Bill Stock noted, “the Supreme Court has once again allowed state governments to block federal policy initiatives with which they disagree.”
AILA expressed serious concerns about the decision by DHS and ICE to resume regular deportations of Haitians; AILA President Bill Stock noted that “the decision to recommence removals to Haiti is impossible to reconcile with recent official recognition of the ongoing humanitarian crisis there.”
Welcoming a new report on immigration from the National Academies, AILA President Bill Stock noted it confirms decades of research, and “what most Americans have always known” that immigrants who come to America “share our ideals and values and contribute to our communities, society, and economy.”
AILA is proud to sponsor the 10th annual Citizenship Day on 9/17/16; the event, a partnership with the NALEO Educational Fund, brings together AILA attorneys across the country, along with other advocates, to provide assistance as lawful permanent residents seek to naturalize.
AILA expressed deep concern over Donald Trump’s immigration platform which “reflected a lack of understanding of immigration law, a disregard for fundamental rights of due process guaranteed by the Constitution, and a failure to appreciate the valuable contributions that immigrants make.”
AILA welcomed the issuance of a proposed rule from USCIS on immigrant entrepreneurs with AILA President Bill Stock noting that this step is one that “AILA has been advocating for years as we saw countless missed opportunities for entrepreneurs due to outdated immigration laws.”
In light of the Department of Justice’s announcement that it will sharply scale back the use of private prisons, AILA President Bill Stock urged the Department of Homeland Security to follow suit, saying “there is no justification for continuing their use in the immigration system.”
Twenty-two mothers being held with their children for months in the Berks family detention center began a hunger strike this week; AILA President William A. Stock urged an end to family detention, noting, “These brave mothers are putting their health at risk to draw attention to injustice.”
AILA President William A. Stock hailed an appellate court ruling in a FOIA lawsuit against EOIR, saying “This case has always been about ensuring that any allegations of misconduct are addressed in a meaningful way and that judges are held accountable for their actions.”
AILA welcomed USCIS’ final rule expanding the class of individuals who are eligible to apply for a provisional unlawful presence waiver; AILA President Bill Stock said that AILA “will continue to work with our 14,000 members and with USCIS to ensure that the program lives up to its intended spirit.”
AILA welcomed the Obama administration’s announcement expanding opportunities for refugees in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to seek protection, but continued to challenge the White House to stop the aggressive enforcement, detention, and deportation of asylum seekers arriving at U.S. borders.
AILA commented on the Department of Justice’s request for the Supreme Court to rehear the United States v. Texas case when a ninth Supreme Court justice is confirmed, urging that the Court rehear the case.
AILA welcomes the introduction of the Refugee Protection Act of 2016 in both the House and Senate; the bill includes provisions to address many of the severe, longstanding problems in the U.S. refugee and asylum systems.
AILA and the American Immigration Council commented on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision affirming that the Flores Settlement Agreement governs the custody and release of all immigrant children, and that the Obama administration’s family detention practices violate that agreement.
AILA President William A. Stock urged lawmakers to oppose two bills, S. 3100 and S. 2193, noting, “At a time when our country desperately needs bipartisan leadership from Congress on immigration reform, these two bills are emblematic of why we still don’t have a workable system.”
AILA welcomes the introduction in the Senate of the Secure the Northern Triangle Act, S.B. 3106, a bill designed to provide a plan to manage the humanitarian crisis in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras and to improve access to asylum and other protections for those fleeing violence in the region.
AILA is proud to release the fourth edition of Essentials of Immigration Law by Richard A. Boswell at the 2016 AILA Annual Conference, a resource that AILA Executive Director Benjamin Johnson notes offers “solid grounding in an extremely complex area of law.”
AILA responded to the Supreme Court’s 4-4 deadlock in United States v. Texas with AILA Executive Director Benjamin Johnson noting, “Though today’s decision is disappointing, we must remember that this is not the end of the road for these incredibly important programs.”
On June 25, 2016, AILA and its partners will offer free immigration law consultations in Las Vegas, NV, at AILA’s sixth annual Pro Bono Clinic; dozens of immigration attorneys will be available to answer questions and assist immigrants with the naturalization process.
AILA will recognize Alexandra Kennedy of Seattle, WA, with the 2016 Sam Williamson Mentor Award in acknowledgment of her outstanding efforts and excellent counsel to immigration attorneys by providing mentoring assistance.
AILA will award Howard “Sam” Myers, III, of Minneapolis, MN, with the 2016 Susan D. Quarles AILA Service Excellence Award in recognition of his outstanding service, over a period of years, in advancing the mission, development, and value of AILA for its members and the public it serves.
AILA will award the 2016 Michael Maggio Memorial Pro Bono Award for outstanding efforts in pro bono representation in the immigration field to the Mesa Verde Pro Bono Project for services to detainees held at the Mesa Verde Detention Facility, and to Adam Rosser, for his work with Syrian refugees.
AILA will award Mitra Ebadolahi and James Duff Lyall of the ACLU Border Litigation Project with the 2016 Arthur C. Helton Memorial Human Rights Award for outstanding service in advancing the cause of human rights.
In a statement highlighting the release of AILA’s new Due Process Denied report, AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis noted, “The response thus far from the Obama Administration to the refugee situation in Central America has been abysmal...We can, and must, do better than this.”
AILA submitted a statement regarding a Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest hearing entitled “The H-2B Temporary Foreign Worker Program: Examining the Effects on Americans’ Job Opportunities and Wages.”
Torey Carter-Conneen will join AILA as Deputy Director of Finance and Operations on June 6, 2016; he will serve as a critical member of the senior management team and will work with AILA’s elected leadership in implementing the strategic vision and planning for the organization.
In this statement, CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project Managing Attorney Katie Shepherd highlights one of the 16 families picked up by ICE in recent arrests and slated for removal; sadly this family was deported before having had a meaningful chance to make claims for protection.
AILA submitted a statement regarding the markup of H.R. 5203, the “Visa Integrity and Security Act of 2016” in the House Judiciary Committee highlighting the fact that the bill “would bring our immigration visa system to a grinding halt.”
The American Immigration Council and AILA have teamed up on a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) seeking information about the government’s administration of the H-1B lottery.
Pleading for an end to their imprisonment, 69 mothers who have been detained with their children at the South Texas Family Residential Center, an immigration detention facility in Dilley, Texas, wrote a public letter to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
Responding to confirmed reports that immigration authorities are planning another surge of arrests aimed at families and unaccompanied children across the nation, AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis joined AILA Executive Director Benjamin Johnson in condemning the raids.
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project shared additional evidence that the federal government and private prison companies are failing to provide child care adequate to ensure access to counsel and meaningful representation as a Texas agency considers licensing the Dilley center.
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis commented on the oral arguments heard today in United States v. Texas noting, “AILA is confident that on the law and facts at issue in this case, it is increasingly clear that there is ample authority and precedent for the president to take these steps.”
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis commented on the H-1B visa cap being reached and that a lottery will be held again noting, “Each petition not selected is a business need unfulfilled and a growth opportunity that is delayed or thwarted.”
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project marked its one-year anniversary and highlighted the generosity of more than 700 volunteers who combined donated more than $6.75 million in pro bono work in the past year helping nearly 8,000 families start the process of seeking asylum.
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project filed a formal complaint and called for a comprehensive investigation into the psychological and physiological impact that family detention is having on children and mothers, as well as the due process violations that occur as a result.
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project filed a formal complaint with the DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and the Office of Inspector General to register ongoing concerns regarding the detention of traumatized mothers and children in ICE family detention centers.
AILA President Victor Nieblas stated, “DHS enforcement policies involving women and children seeking asylum at our borders violate due process, repudiate our fundamental values of fairness and justice, and have sown widespread fear and turmoil in communities, schools, and churches nationwide.”
AILA joined a multitude of stakeholders urging the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm the executive branch’s authority over immigration issues; oral arguments in the case, United States vs. Texas, are scheduled for April 18, 2016, and a decision is expected later in June 2016.
In response to the introduction of the “Fair Day in Court for Kids Act” in the House of Representatives, AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis noted that the bill would, “stop the injustice of forcing vulnerable individuals to face deportation without counsel.”
The four CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project partners joined with other immigrant rights organizations in an amicus brief explaining how the government has misinterpreted the Flores settlement and failed to comply with Judge Dolly Gee's August 2015 ruling in the case.
AILA welcomed the introduction of the “Fair Day in Court for Kids Act of 2016” AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis noted, “This legislation would go a long way toward ensuring a measure of fairness and due process in the immigration system for the most vulnerable.”
Thirty mothers detained with their children at the Berks Family Detention Center in Pennsylvania wrote a letter to the media pleading for their freedom. The mothers write that they came to the U.S. seeking refuge, and that they want their prolonged and cruel detention to be known.
After being held in detention for more than a month by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), eight families rounded up by ICE at the beginning of January have finally been released from detention while their cases proceed.
Immigration organizations, including AILA, filed a FOIA lawsuit to force the Obama administration to release policy documents about its practice of fast-tracking the cases of recent Central American refugee families and children.
Seven women picked up and detained by ICE in early January in widely publicized raids have made a direct and personal plea to President Obama to allow their release while they pursue ongoing appeals of their deportation orders.
AILA President Victor Nieblas welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision to take up Texas vs. United States, noting that the final ruling “will go far beyond immigration. No single state should be empowered to thwart the federal government’s nationwide policy decisions.”
After successfully halting the removal of 33 Central American mothers and children rounded up by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project called on the Obama administration to release the families confined at Dilley.
AILA and the American Immigration Council sent a letter to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson criticizing raids to remove asylum-seeking Central American families and calling for a meeting to discuss how to guarantee due process and the necessary humanitarian protections for those families.
Last night, the CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project succeeded in halting the deportation of four Central American families apprehended by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) over the weekend, who had been scheduled for deportation this morning.
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis condemned reports of ICE raids targeting Central American families saying, “Rounding up mothers and children who have fled the most violent region in the western hemisphere and are trying to find refuge abrogates our legal obligations.”