Immigration News for June 21, 2021

Best news of the day, if it actually happens, is the possibility that Title 42 expulsions may end and normal border processing may resume.  (Axios)

“The White House is considering ending — as early as July 31 — the use of a Trump-era public health order that’s let U.S. border officials quickly turn back migrant families to Mexico, Axios has learned.

“Why it matters: The policy known as Title 42 has resulted in tens of thousands of migrant family members, including asylum seekers, being sent away — as well as thousands of kids then separating from their families to cross into the United States alone….

“The administration has been in negotiations with the ACLU, which has put a temporary hold on its lawsuit targeting the practice of expelling families….

Over the weekend, the ACLU extended its pause on litigation until July 2.”

TPS will protect Josiane Valsaint for 18 months. TPS will not bring back her husband, who was deported. It will not give her a path to legal residence. It will not help Haitians waiting in Mexico for a chance to apply for asylum in the United States. TPS will help Josiane Valsaint for a limited time—but much more than TPS is needed. (San Diego Union Tribune)

“The rules requiring people to be inside the United States when TPS goes into effect, when paired with recent restrictionist immigration and border policies designed to keep asylum seekers outside the country, mean that while the new TPS designation offers protection to many Haitians, others who fled the same conditions are left out.

“For years, the United States would not deport people to Haiti unless they had been convicted of certain serious crimes because of the conditions in the country after the 2010 earthquake. That meant that Haitians who came to ports of entry at the southern border were allowed into the U.S. temporarily but would not be protected once the government decided to resume deportation flights….

“Valsaint’s husband was among those targeted for removal in the early years of the Trump administration. He gave up trying to stay in the United States after his health deteriorated from a year spent inside an immigration detention facility and was deported in 2019. Valsaint still keeps their wedding photo on her coffee table, and her children talk with their father daily….

“Community organizers and advocates who work with Haitian communities across the United States are pushing for Congress to pass a bill that would allow longtime TPS holders to receive green cards.” 

Refugees now living in cities across the United States tell of their escapes, their long waits for resettlement, and adjusting to the new country. (Minnesota Reformer)

“After Mohamed Juma, his seven younger siblings and their parents escaped Sudan during a civil war and humanitarian crisis, they spent eight years waiting in a Kenyan refugee camp. They were finally accepted as U.S. refugees in 2013….

“After a firing squad executed her fiance in Liberia’s 1980 military coup, Naquetta Ricks’ mother secured a medical leave of absence from work and fled with her children to Chicago. 

“The family moved to Colorado a few months later. Without a lawyer, their attempts to gain asylum status were at first fruitless. Then in 1986, a path to citizenship opened up when then-President Ronald Reagan signed legislation granting amnesty to millions of undocumented immigrants. …

“Matala and his family resettled in Wichita, one of an estimated 3.4 million Zimbabweans who have fled their home country to escape violence and killings….

“‘I asked some of my friends about what you think about refugees, and everyone is telling me this bad stuff. I didn’t show my sadness, but it did break my heart a little,’ Matala said. ‘We can’t just come in and start acting without even knowing the culture. We don’t even know what is going on.’” 

Heartbreaking refugee stories continue. This father has been separated from his family for 15 years, waiting for 5 years for the U.S. Embassy to process.a follow-to-rejoin petition. (Washington Post)

“Meanwhile, my family is stranded in Sudan. During the years of conflict in Darfur, my wife’s father was killed in front of her, and my mother was killed while traveling to accompany my wife back from giving birth at my wife’s family’s home. The last time I saw my wife and children was after they had fled to a refugee camp in Al-Fashir.

“They currently live in the northern town of New Halfa, near Sudan’s border with Eritrea and Ethiopia. I worry about them constantly — this region is suffering a lot of conflict. Flooding of the Atbara River in August destroyed the room my family was sharing, so they now live in a tent, in dire conditions….

“We were hopeful that under a new, more welcoming Biden administration, the process would improve. But so far nothing has changed.” 

Black immigrants receive racist treatment including being disproportionately detained and having higher bail costs. (Huffington Post)

“Yacouba, a political activist in Ivory Coast, knew if he didn’t immediately flee his home country, he wouldn’t survive.

“After being threatened, attacked and tortured by people sympathetic to those in power, Yacouba fled his country in 2018. He went to Brazil for a few years, then made a perilous trek through Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Honduras and Mexico before finally arriving in the United States. 

“The journey was one of the two most challenging periods of his life. The second was being detained as a Black immigrant in the U.S. “

Remittances from migrants support families and whole communities in Central America. (Washington Post)

“Dry sounding “workers’ remittances” represent money that migrants from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador send back home to their families and communities. By any measure, remittances have more transformative economic power in El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala than all U.S. aid contributions to those countries combined….

“Workers’ remittances — money sent by people working mostly in low-paid jobs in housekeeping, construction, food preparation, etc. — are a crucial source of investment and external financing for the Northern Triangle.

“In 2018, remittances from the United States to the Northern Triangle region exceeded $19 billion, accounting for 21 percent of gross domestic product in El Salvador, 20 percent in Honduras and 12 percent in Guatemala. The following year, remittances again made up a fifth of El Salvador’s and Honduras’s GDPs, and they accounted for 14 percent of Guatemala’s.

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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