Young Immigrants’ Fate Unclear as Congress Delays DACA Fix
Thousands of immigrants are losing their protection from deportation under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, including many who missed the deadline or saw their applications lost in the mail. Trump rescinded the program earlier this year, but he let immigrants renew their papers if they were set to expire between September and March.
Immigrants had to reapply by Oct. 5 and pay a $495 fee. The government says 132,000 of the 154,000 eligible DACA renewals applied in time, leaving more than 20,000 without any protection from deportation. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services said 900 requests were mistakenly rejected for being late, despite having arrived at the filing sites on time. Those applicants were told to reapply by Dec. 2. The agency said it is still working to determine how many requests were affected by U.S. Postal Service delays, following reports of immigrants who shipped their documents well in advance and were delivered late.
Meanwhile, advocacy groups are highlighting the detention in Pennsylvania last week of Osman Aroche Enriquez, 26, a Guatemalan immigrant whose DACA renewal was reportedly among the ones delayed by the postal service. Immigrants start questioning whether DACA recipients with delayed applications can be deported as Enriquez was transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and detained for three days.
Activists Want Democrats to Force an Immigration Fix by the End of the Year
Advocates are turning up the pressure on Congressional Democrats to protect 800,000 “Dreamers” brought to the U.S. illegally as children.
They’re planning a protest at Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s office this week, asking him to block a government funding bill until Republicans agree to preserve the right for Dreamers to live and work in the U.S. The negotiations are being conducted by Schumer’s top deputy, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin.
The New York Immigration Coalition will join too, among other activists, with the purpose of asking Congress for a permanent fix. “We want Congress to do their job and get the DREAM Act passed,” she said. “However that has to happen by the end of the year is fine with us.”
Trump Says Immigration System is a National Security Threat, but Goes Easy on Russia
President Trump described the U.S. immigration system as a threat to national security on Monday, saying the “wrong people” are being admitted, even as he touched lightly on Russia’s menace in a speech coinciding with release of his first comprehensive security strategy paper.
In notable instances, such as the treatment of Russia, Trump’s words and those in the paper diverged significantly.
The president did not echo the paper’s point about Russia’s “destabilizing cyber capabilities” or its contention that, “through modernized forms of subversive tactics, Russia interferes in the domestic political affairs of countries around the world.” Neither the paper nor Trump alluded to Moscow’s interference in the 2016 campaign, now the subject of criminal and congressional probes.
Graham Had ‘Long’ Talk with Trump About Immigration
Sen. Lindsey Graham is keeping President Donald Trump in the loop on negotiations about a possible deal on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, the South Carolina Republican said Monday.
Graham has been working with Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, for months to try to pass a bill to save DACA.
In recent weeks, negotiations have intensified, with Graham and Durbin meeting with four other Republicans and another Democrat as part of the core working group that has been meeting in Durbin’s office regularly when the Senate is in town. Those talks are progressing but Republicans are insistent that any deal won’t happen until January, despite Democrats’ hope to have something by the end of the year.
Trump Fully Embraces Far Right Immigration Playbook
Doubts existed about Trump’s commitment level on his enforcement of the immigration law, as some of the more aggressive proposals considered by the administration languished in bureaucratic morass and as he said strongly favorable things about recipients of the DACA program in September as he opted to end it.
In mid-September, Trump wrote, “Does anybody really want to throw out good, educated and accomplished young people who have jobs, some serving in the military?”
But since then, he has insisted on controversial immigration reduction proposals that would have a hard time passing even among some Republicans, including drastically cutting the overall number of green cards given out annually and transforming the way they are given out, placing a heavy emphasis on only highly skilled, English-speaking immigrants and not low-skilled individuals.
Trump’s Homeland Security Slammed for Ignoring Sexual Assaults in Immigrant Detention Centers
More than 70 members of Congress lambasted the Department of Homeland Security on Monday for failing to investigate thousands of sexual assault complaints filed by immigrants in their custody over the last decade.
In a letter addressed to four federal officials, including White House chief of staff and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) acting inspector general, John Kelly, the 71 signees called on Homeland Security and its secondary agencies to investigate the claims immediately.
The letter is predicated off of a class-action civil rights complaint filed April 11 with Homeland Security by Community Initiatives for Visiting Immigrants in Confinement (CIVIC), a progressive advocacy group.
Immigration Groups Launch ‘San Diego Rapid Response Network’
Advocates, faith leaders, attorneys and immigrant families will gather Tuesday evening at St. Jude’s Shrine of the West church for the launch of the San Diego Rapid Response Network, a coalition modeled after others in the state, that aims to prepare for and respond to what organizers describe as inhumane immigration enforcement activities
The network is the union of nonprofits that will pool resources to respond to actions such as immigration checkpoints, raids and arrests. The group has a 24-hour hotline to document such activities, provide emergency assistance and connect affected people with resources. Members include the San Diego Organizing Project, the American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego and Imperial Counties, the Employee Rights Center and the Jewish Family Service of San Diego.