We are excited to announce our new blog series, ‘Weekly News Review’! One of our goals at McEntee Law Group, is to always keep our clients and followers updated on immigration news. It can be hard to keep track of all the new developments everyday in the media. Immigration is a complicated topic with constant policy/procedural changes. We hope this new blog series will help keep our followers in the loop and break down complicated headlines.
1. White House Announces Sweeping Immigration Bill — Thursday, Feb. 18th
Thursday morning, the White House announced a sweeping immigration bill “to provide an earned path to citizenship, to address the root causes of migration and responsibly manage the southern border, and to reform the immigrant visa system, and for other purposes.” The comprehensive bill, titled the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021, consists of multiple parts but some key provisions include:
An 8 year path to citizenship for individuals who arrived in the U.S. prior to January 1st
Expedited path to citizenship for DACA recipients
Remove the word “alien” from all US code, to be replace by “non-citizen”
Raise per-country caps “from 55,000 to 80,000”
Repeal 3 and 10 year bars, learn more about current bars to admissibility here
Immigration court reform, including hiring 55 new immigration judges a year and instituting e-filling
Funding USCIS to specifically focus on addressing backlogs
4 year strategic engagement with Central America, including a transnational anti-drug task force
2. Mexican Shelter is Receiving an Increased Number of Migrants — Thursday, Feb. 18th
On Thursday, the Associated Press reported on the current influx of Latin American migrants and the impact this is having on shelters in Mexico. The number of migrants is increasing, but due to the pandemic, there is limited shelter capacity. Many shelters have closed and those that remain open have had to drastically reduce their bed space. In 2020, one shelter, known as “The 72,” hosted 3,000 migrants for the entire year. After just six weeks in 2021, The 72 has already hosted about 1,500 migrants. Gabriel Romero, the priest who runs the shelter, discussed the importance of a dialogue with the authorities during this time as the situation could quickly “get out of control.” Many are concerned for the safety and well-being of migrants at this time, and so are we. We hope that increased transnational cooperation will help provide safer accommodations for migrants awaiting relief.
3. Op-Ed, “Can Biden pass comprehensive immigration reform?” — Monday, Feb. 15th
On Monday, Lauren R. Aronson, director of the Immigration Law Clinic at the University of Illinois, further discussed the feasibility of Biden’s new immigration reform. She compares the Biden Administration and Obama Administration immigration policies, the impact Republican’s support will have on Biden’s bill in the Senate, and the possible use of enforcement priority memos to effectively pause deportation hearings. While this piece might be short, we highly recommend reading what Arson has to say. She does a wonderful job of breaking down the current political climate and the future of immigration reform in the U.S.
4. Immigration Win, Woman living in a Church who Feared Deportation Can Now Leave After 3 Years — Thursday, Feb. 11th
While this immigration win may have happened a week ago, it was simply too great not to share in our round up this week. Saheeda Nadeem who has spent close to 3 years in a church in Kalamazoo to avoid deportation has been granted a supervision order and will be permitted to leave the church without risk of immediate deportation. Nadeem, originally from Pakistan, sought refuge at the church when President Trump began to take an aggressive approach towards immigrants. She has been in the U.S. for 13 years and did not feel safe returning to her native country. After receiving her supervision order this month, she feels she now has “freedom”. Stories like this give us hope for the future of immigration reform.
Thank you for taking the time to read our first ‘Weekly News Review’! Want daily immigration news updates? Follow us on Twitter.