How the Immigration System Works

Groups Sue U.S. Government for Turning Away Asylum Seekers

Groups Sue U.S. Government for Turning Away Asylum Seekers

Men, women, and children fleeing persecution, grave violence, and even death arrive daily at Ports of Entry (POE) all along the U.S.-Mexico border and present themselves to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers to seek asylum in the United States. The right to seek asylum is guaranteed under both U.S. and international law, yet […]

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Ending Deportation Priorities Breaks Away from Decades of History and Sound Policy

Ending Deportation Priorities Breaks Away from Decades of History and Sound Policy

A recent story from ProPublica has revealed an internal February 2017 memorandum authored by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to its employees about the implementation of recent Executive Orders on immigration enforcement. The memo is stunning in its declaration: “effective immediately, Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers will take enforcement action against all removable [immigrants] […]

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How to Get the Immigration System in Line With Our Nation’s Values and Interests

How to Get the Immigration System in Line With Our Nation’s Values and Interests

Over the past two decades, much of the immigration policy debate has focused on issues related to immigration enforcement. In fact, many argue that “enforcement first”—the notion that we must adequately enforce the laws on the books before considering broader immigration reforms—has de facto become the nation’s singular immigration policy. This preoccupation with enforcement has […]

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Know Your Rights in Texas: Preparing for State’s New Anti-Immigrant Law SB4

Know Your Rights in Texas: Preparing for State’s New Anti-Immigrant Law SB4

After debate rocked the Texas State Capitol, Governor Greg Abbott signed the controversial Senate Bill 4 (SB4) in May, which purports to ban sanctuary city policies and gives local police the authority to inquire about the immigration status of anyone they detain. Though the law won’t go into effect until September, it’s crucial to know […]

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How Many People Overstay Their Visas? Not Even the Government Knows

Written by on May 30, 2017 in How the Immigration System Works with 0 Comments
How Many People Overstay Their Visas? Not Even the Government Knows

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials unveiled their newest “overstay” estimates—the number of people from other countries who remain in the United States after their visas expire—at a recent congressional hearing. However, agency officials themselves acknowledge serious flaws in their estimates, stemming from a lack of reliable exit data, as well as poorly coordinated communications […]

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Former Leader of Anti-Immigrant Group Now Leads USCIS Oversight Office

Former Leader of Anti-Immigrant Group Now Leads USCIS Oversight Office

The Trump administration continues to stack its deck with key players in the anti-immigrant movement, most recently naming Julie Kirchner as the new Ombudsman for the Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) department. Kirchner, the former executive director of one of the nation’s most prominent anti-immigrant groups, will be tasked with improving the quality of immigration […]

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USCIS Changes How Processing Times Are Posted

Written by on January 6, 2017 in How the Immigration System Works with 5 Comments
USCIS Changes How Processing Times Are Posted

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that beginning on January 4, 2017, it has changed how it posts processing times. Rather that listing weeks or months, it now provides specific dates. This is a small initial step toward providing better customer service and giving individuals and employers the information they need about their […]

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How USCIS Calculates Processing Times and How It Could Be Improved

How USCIS Calculates Processing Times and How It Could Be Improved

When people think about immigration reform, they usually think about legalization, enforcement, and updating the legal immigration system. However, there are other upgrades to the immigration system that can be implemented by agencies without legislation which would significantly improve efficiency and could ensure that immigrants, their families, and employers receive better information and customer service. […]

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What the New Citizenship Fee Structure Means for Aspiring Americans

What the New Citizenship Fee Structure Means for Aspiring Americans

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) is primarily a fee-funded agency within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Every two years they are required to review the fees they collect and adjust as needed. Earlier this month USCIS announced they have completed their “fee study” and have proposed raising fees across the board by an […]

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Giving the Immigration Facts a Fighting Chance

Giving the Immigration Facts a Fighting Chance

As we move through the 2016 presidential election cycle, the issue of immigration will continue to be a central topic of the debate. The United States is at a tipping point after more than two decades without meaningful upgrades to its immigration system. Current U.S. law does not provide sufficient channels for legal immigration and […]

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