Time running out for DACA renewals and other immigration news – October 1, 2017

DACA renewal 2

When the Trump administration rescinded DACA, they set two deadlines: March 5 for the end of the program, and October 5 for any DACA recipient whose permit expires before March 5 to file for renewal. That gave Congress six months to act and DACA recipients only 30 days to file for renewal. (Only those recipients whose DACA expires between September 5 and March 5 were eligible to file for renewal during this 30-day window.)

Brooklyn Federal Judge Nicholas Garaufis, hearing a challenge to the DACA rescission, expressed outrage with the government’s position:

“This is a democracy, these people have thrived in America, and you can’t just come into court and espouse a position that is so heartless.

“I’m 68 years old, and I’ve worked in every branch of government, and I’ve never seen a position like this.

“It’s unacceptable, quite frankly, to me, as a human being and as an American.”

Obviously, the government can and does espouse a heartless position. And they are not moving.

NOTE TO READERS: I’m officially on vacation until October 11, so expect fewer, and shorter, posts as I focus on museums and autumn leaves.

DHS will not extend DACA renewal deadline, attorney says in court (CNN, 9/26/17)

Brooklyn judge blasts feds as ‘heartless’ over refusal to change DACA deadline (New York Daily News, 9/26/17)

Brooklyn Judge Tears Into ‘Heartless’ Trump Administration Over DACA Deadline (The Gothamist, 9/27/17)

Immigrants line up to renew work permits as program ends (AP via MPR, 9/29/17)

“The government estimates there are about 154,000 recipients whose permits expire between Sept. 5, 2017, when the Trump administration announced the end of the program, and March 5.

“The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services said Friday that it had received 39,400 renewal applications since Sept. 5.”

And in other immigration news

Hell to Heartland: For Anfa and Family, a Reunion 3 Years and a Lifetime in the Making (KSTP, 10/1/17) First, stringent refugee veting policies in place for years and then Trump’s refugee ban separated this family – now they have been reunited.

Opinion: Trump’s slashing of the refugee cap denies our history – and these successes (Los Angeles Times, 9/28/17)

A draft report by the Department of Health and Human Services — which was subsequently rejected by the White House — found that over a 10-year span refugees, sent $60.3 billion more in revenue at all levels of government than they received in benefits, undercutting the lie that refugees are a drain on the American taxpayer.

“So why reduce the cap? To preserve “the security and safety of the American people, according to the State Department. But that’s a canard: Refugees are vetted twice, once by the United Nations before they are referred to a country for resettlement, and then by federal officials stationed overseas and here in the U.S., a process that means the chance of an American being killed by a terrorist on home soil is about 1 in 3.6 billion per year.”

Children: Amid a Growing Court Backlog Many Still Unrepresented (TRAC-University of Syracuse, 9/28/17) Besides lack of representation, children face a growing backlog for decisions. That comes despite a drop-off in new cases – from 56,692 in 2014 to 21,398 in the first eleven months of 2017.

“Despite a dramatic drop-off in new Immigration Court cases involving unaccompanied children this year, the backlog of pending children’s cases has continued to rise. The latest case-by-case court data show that the court backlog of these children’s cases reached an all-time high of 88,069 at the end of August 2017[1]. …”

Most disapprove of Trump’s handling of immigration, but disaster relief and taxes are more pressing, CNN poll says (Daily News, 9/27/17) Think Americans are anti-immigrant? Think again – most don’t like the punitive policies coming out of Washington.

“When it comes to undocumented immigrants already living in the United States, 84 percent said the government’s top priority should be developing a plan to allow some people living here illegally to become legal residents, the poll found. Thirteen percent said the top priority should be deporting all people living in the U.S. illegally.

“In dealing with immigrants who want to move to the U.S., 56 percent said the government’s top priority should be reforming current immigration laws to better reflect the country’s needs. In contrast, 40 percent said it should be enforcing current immigration laws to prevent people from coming to the country illegally, the poll found.”

Forced Back to Cambodia (Al Jazeera, 9/28/17) Al Jazeera English has a half-hour documentary on Cambodians being deported back to a country they do not know – and may never have seen. The reason they can be deported: though they came here as infants and children, they did not file for citizenship. That means the government can use crimes committed – even if they have served jail sentences, paid fines, made restitution, etc. – as grounds for deportation.

Elyria caregiver of disabled stepson deported (Cleveland Plain Dealer, 9/28/17)

“His attorney, David Leopold, repeated what he has said many times in the past few days: “If they are deporting this man, who has worked within the system and followed every rule and spent almost 14 years taking care of his stepson, (Juan Pino, 28, who suffers from cerebral palsy and a severe mental disability), then no undocumented immigrant has a chance. Where is their heart? Where is any sense of compassion?”

“Hernandez-Ramirez, who had previously been deported and returned, was arrested in 2013 for being in the country without documentation and scheduled for deportation. He was given a reprieve by immigration officials in 2015 and given a work permit to stay until at least February 2018, when he could again ask for a further stay.

“But that changed last month when immigration officials unexpectedly showed up at the man’s home and said he was to be deported. His wife, Seleste Wisniewski, said agents told her it was happening because of the “new president and the new administration.”

Deportations slow under Trump despite decrease in arrests by ICE (Immigration Prof blog, 9/29/17) The pressure of increasing arrests has produced an increased backlog of cases, rather than an increase in deportations.

“Although ICE took into custody more immigrants with criminal records, the fastest-growing category of arrests since Trump’s inauguration is those facing no criminal charges. The agency arrested more than 28,000 “non-criminal immigration violators” between Jan. 22 and Sept. 2, according to the agency’s records, a nearly threefold increase over the same period in 2016.”

Travel ban opponents move to challenge Trump’s latest set of restrictions (BuzzFeed, 9/29/17)

“President Trump’s newest travel ban is still a Muslim ban at its core, and it certainly engages in discrimination based on national origin, which is unlawful. Adding a few North Koreans and a tiny group of Venezuelan officials doesn’t paper over the original sin of the Muslim ban. We’ll see President Trump in court — again,” ACLU executive director Anthony Romero said in a statement.”

Federal Plan to Keep Files of Immigrant Social Media Activity Causes Alarm (NPR, 9/30/17) Not to worry, DHS says – we already do this, so it’s not a new cause for alarm. Just ignore the man behind the curtain. 

Facebook ‘likes’ could land immigrants, naturalized citizens in trouble with feds (Detroit Free Press, 9/29/17) O’Connor, who is a naturalized U.S. citizen from the United Kingdom and served as the first Chief Privacy Officer at the Department of Homeland Security in the George W. Bush administration, said she finds the inclusion of naturalized citizens surprising.

“Heretofore I did not believe that being a naturalized citizen made me a second-class citizen of this country. And I find that, on its face, separate and apart from the categories of data, to be concerning,” O’Connor said.

Clout of Somali-American voters increases in Minneapolis elections (Star Tribune, 9/30/17) Because … immigrants assimilate and become citizens.

Who is hurt by Trump’s new refugee quota? People like Roqaya Moahmmed. (The Guardian, 10/1/17) Roqaya and her family got here before the door slammed shut.

“Roqayah was five when the war came to their village near Baghdad. She remembers how, overnight, a happy childhood surrounded by a loving family was supplanted by tanks, helicopters, American soldiers, fear. Her mother worked as a translator for the Wall Street Journal and later for the US Civil-Military Affairs, which made her a target of militias. After being kidnapped and ransomed, Ahlam fled with the family to Syria. It would be another three years, and a whole other story, before they were resettled in the US.”…

“It is a responsibility of the US to accept refugees because a lot of the stuff that is happening is because of them—because of the government.” She paused. “Sorry to be so blunt.” She reminded us that what refugees spend their time worrying about is not how to kill people or blow things up, but how to learn English and find a job: “They are trying to figure out what ‘organization’ means, or how to get on a bus.”



About Mary Turck

News Day, written by Mary Turck, analyzes, summarizes, links to, and comments on reports from news media around the world, with particular attention to immigration, education, and journalism. Fragments, also written by Mary Turck, has fiction, poetry and some creative non-fiction. Mary Turck edited TC Daily Planet, www.tcdailyplanet.net, from 2007-2014, and edited the award-winning Connection to the Americas and AMERICAS.ORG, in its pre-2008 version. She is also a recovering attorney and the author of many books for young people (and a few for adults), mostly focusing on historical and social issues.
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