Joan Friedland

Joan Friedland, formerly a Managing Attorney at the National Immigration Law Center in Washington, D.C., is a Senior Fellow at the Immigration Policy Center. Joan worked for many years with non-profits and in private practice in New Mexico and Florida, practicing primarily in the areas of civil rights, immigration and criminal law. She is a graduate of Harvard Law School and currently lives in New Mexico.

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New Mexico Governor Uses Anti-Immigrant Driver’s License Proposal as Fundraising Tool

New Mexico Governor Uses Anti-Immigrant Driver’s License Proposal as Fundraising Tool

Joan Friedland is a senior advisor at the National Immigration Law Center. For the fifth time in four years, New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is trying to get the legislature to repeal the 2003 law granting licenses to all eligible drivers, regardless of their immigration status. There’s no reasonable expectation that the bill she supports [...]

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Immigrants without Legal Representation Not Benefitting from Prosecutorial Discretion

Immigrants without Legal Representation Not Benefitting from Prosecutorial Discretion

After ICE Director John Morton issued a memo last June outlining how and when ICE officials should exercise prosecutorial discretion in immigration cases, many were optimistic that the memo’s implementation would relieve backlogs and help the agency focus on higher priority immigration cases. Months later, however, folks are finding that one large group of people [...]

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New Mexico Governor Fails to Repeal State Driver’s License Law Yet Again

New Mexico Governor Fails to Repeal State Driver’s License Law Yet Again

Yesterday, the New Mexico Legislature ended its 2012 session, leaving intact the 2003 state law that allows driver’s licenses to be issued to individuals regardless of immigration status. This marks the third unsuccessful attempt by Republican Governor Susana Martinez to repeal the state’s driver’s license law. HB103, the bill backed by Martinez, passed the House [...]

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Policing the Enforcers: Criminalizing Alabama Employees Encourages Discrimination

Policing the Enforcers: Criminalizing Alabama Employees Encourages Discrimination

Alabama lawmakers want undocumented immigrants to be so afraid of the consequences of the state’s new anti-immigrant law (HB 56) that they leave the state. However, that’s not the only fear factor built into the law. Under section 6(f), state and local government employees must report violations of HB 56—which includes unlawfully present immigrants even [...]

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So-Called ‘Smart Enforcement’ Cuts Corners on Immigrants Rights

So-Called ‘Smart Enforcement’ Cuts Corners on Immigrants Rights

In a March 29 meeting with immigration advocates that I attended, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) chief John Morton asked to be judged on ICE’s record, not on rumors. But that’s just why I’m concerned. At a hastily called meeting following the leak of a memo setting quotas for non-criminal removals, Morton repudiated the February [...]

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PASS ID Act Not An Immigration Solution

PASS ID Act Not An Immigration Solution

Photo by gwen. Introduced by Sen. Akaka (D-HI) last week with 5 co-sponsors, the “Providing for Additional Security in States’ Identification Act” (PASS ID) (S. 1261) would give states a breather from the costs and restrictions imposed by the REAL ID Act, which became law in 2005 without Congressional hearings and as part of must-pass [...]

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