Illegal immigrants who are immediate relatives of citizens could stay in the U.S. while applying for permanent residency. The goal is to reduce a family's time apart.
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is proposing to make it easier for illegal immigrants who are immediate family members of American citizens to apply for permanent residency, a move that could affect as many as 1 million of the estimated 11 million immigrants living here illegally.
The new rule, which the Department of Homeland Security will post for public comment Monday, would reduce the time illegal immigrants are separated from their American families while seeking legal status, immigration officials said. Currently, such immigrants must leave the country to apply for a legal visa, often leading to long stints away as they await resolution of their applications.
The proposal is the latest move by the administration to use its executive powers to revise immigration procedures without changing the law. It reflects an effort by President Obama to improve his standing among those Latino voters who feel he has not met his 2008 campaign promise to pursue comprehensive immigration reform.
Clara’s eldest kid was 6 years old and her youngest just a year old when it happened. Josefina’s baby was 9 months. All three children were ripped from their mothers and sent to live in foster homes with strangers. Clara and Josefina, sisters in their early 30s who lived together in a small northern New Mexico town, had done nothing to harm their children or to elicit the attention of the child welfare department. Yet one morning last year, their family was shattered when federal immigration authorities detained both sisters. Clara and Josefina were deported four months later. For a year, they had no contact with their children.
The sun was rising on a late summer morning in Farmington. Clara (all parents’ names in this story have been changed) was asleep inside the trailer that she shared with the children and Josefina, who was finishing a night shift at the local restaurant where both sisters worked. Clara says she was jolted awake by the sound of banging and yelling. A group of uniformed officers, some marked with ICE, for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and others DEA, for Drug Enforcement Administration, burst through the door.
If there was ever a time for boldness, it is now, as we face record unemployment, foreclosures and a broken path to citizenship.
Across the United States, Labor Day marks the end of summer, and a day off from the job for the lucky ones. We often forget that this holiday originated from strife, not leisure. Labor Day became a national holiday to celebrate America's workers only because when workers demanded it.
A federal judge in Phoenix blocked key provisions of Arizona’s notorious anti-immigrant law on Wednesday, hours before it was scheduled to take effect. US District Judge Susan Bolton ruled a partial injunction would apply to the portion of the law that requires police officers to stop and interrogate anyone they suspect is an undocumented immigrant. The law sparked mass protests across the country and a boycott of Arizona. We speak with Isabel Garcia, co-chair of the Tucson-based Coalition for Human Rights.
JUAN GONZALEZ: A federal judge in Phoenix blocked key
provisions of Arizona’s notorious anti-immigrant law on Wednesday, hours
before it was scheduled to take effect. US District Judge Susan Bolton
ruled a partial injunction would apply to the portion of the law that
requires police officers to stop and interrogate anyone they suspect is
an undocumented immigrant. The ruling came in response to an injunction
requested by the Obama administration, which had argued in a lawsuit
that the law was unconstitutional and warned the provisions would result
in racial profiling.
Last week, immigrant rights groups became the first major
Within days of the public criticism, the President met with activists to frankly discuss the political realities of moving forward. Having used massive marches in cities across the nation to put immigration reform in the national spotlight in 2006, activists are now returning to this tactic as part of new campaign to escalate pressure on Obama and Democratic Congressional leaders. The goal is to finally pass comprehensive reform this year.
On March 15, 2009, Alonso Chehade, an undocumented immigrant from Peru, was arrested at the US/Canada border for unlawful presence in the United States. After remaining in the detention center for two weeks, Chehade was later released with the assistance of his family, who posted a $7,500 bond to free him from prison.
Pedro C.* is not the kind of teen adults would call a trouble maker. The soft-spoken sixteen year-old, a junior at a San Francisco public high school, enjoys soccer and basketball, plays video games, and loves cars. He’s also a talented artist and often draws mythical Aztec figures. He has never been involved with crime or gangs, and before February, had never been arrested. But now, under a new police policy, the city may punish him for a minor offense by forcing him out of the country.
The policy that could lead to Pedro's deportation may soon be amended by local lawmakers, in response to public outcry. But for now, Pedro is in limbo, still trying to make sense of what happened.
For most of the morning, Antoñia Peña sat quietly at the end of the table on a panel of speakers. Throughout the event, called "Voices from the Front Lines of the Economic Crisis," another panelist translated the proceedings into Spanish for her. When Peña finally spoke, in a halting but urgent English, I wasn't the only one to sit up and take notice.
"Most of us have been exploited or abused by our employers," she began. Peña came to the United States from Colombia in her youth, hoping to find a better life for herself and for her family back home. What she found instead was a life of isolation and abuse. Like many immigrants who come to the United States as young women, it took her years to become aware of her rights.
Luke Cole, a San Francisco attorney who was one of the pioneers in the field of environmental justice - filing lawsuits for poor plaintiffs or people of color whose communities were being ravaged by corporate polluters - died in a head-on car crash Saturday in Uganda. He was 46.
Mr. Cole and his wife, Nancy Shelby, were on vacation and traveling on a rural road in western Uganda about 7:30 a.m. when "a truck veered to Luke's side of the road," said Mr. Cole's father, Herbert "Skip" Cole.
Mr. Cole died, and his wife was injured. She was flown to Amsterdam, where she underwent an eye operation Monday, Herbert Cole said.
Editor’s Note: Six million older immigrants live in the United States, a figure projected to triple by 2030. Advocates for these elders have set out to bring their voices –- and new respect for them as community contributors –- to the public and agency decision makers, who often dismiss them as mere clients seeking benefits.
If treated as partners, rather than mere users of public services, immigrant elders can help cash-strapped agencies solve problems in their communities, according to a new report.