Saturday, September 1, 2007

Is There Racial Profiling in Immigration Enforcement?

Ana Maria Patino sent some thoughtful comments well worth mulling over:

"A man from Santa Fe originally from El Salvador was illegally detained by ICE for 5 weeks and mistaken for another person. (See article here) According to the article Jose Cesar Guzman has legal status to live and work in the United States. He “was employed as the executive chef at the Inn of the Governors when he was arrested at his home June 19 by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents looking for another man with a similar name”. Mr. Guzman’s attorney was able to establish his true identity in 10 minutes but ICE continued to hold the man for 5 weeks and even had started deportation proceedings against him. This is at least the 4th person who we have heard about who has been illegally arrested and incarcerated and in some cases deported by ICE.

If you will recall ICE deported another American citizen, Pedro Guzman, recently even after Pedro wrote down when he was booked on a trespass charge that he had been born in the United States. Pedro, who is developmentally disabled, was lost in Mexico for months as his family desperately tried to find him. He was turned away from the border twice by government border officials when he tried to re-enter the U.S. The border officials would not believe that Pedro was an American citizen.

Lenin Freud Perez-Torres was arrrested in Los Angeles and held in Los Angeles County jail for 25 days because he was mistaken for a deported felon. In August 2007 the California Supreme Court decided the State of California could be sued for negligence because they knew or should have known they had the wrong person. Perez Torres is 4 inches shorter and weighs 40 pounds less than the man who was deported. Perez-Torres has also filed a federal lawsuit against Chertoff and ICE.

Then there is American-citizen, Alicia Rodriguez, who happens to be of Mexican ancestry, was taken into custody and placed in the Arlington city jail in Texas because the authorities mistook her for an undocumented immigrant who had been deported three years earlier. Alicia, an accountant and mother of three children, missed her children’s first day of school and feared being deported.

I hope all these people are filing lawsuit as a result of their illegal arrest and incarceration. Perez-Torres has. Why are all the people we are hearing about of Latin descent? I guess ICE assumes those of us who are Hispanic are in the United States illegally?"

Ana Maria Patino

September 1, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack (1)

DHS Report: Undocumented immigrants heading to states other than California

Amy Taxin's Immigration Blog  reports that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security released its latest count of the unauthorized immigrant population in the U.S.. The report, which focused on the period between January 1, 2000 and January 1, 2006, estimates that the unauthorized population rose 37 percent to 11.6 million. The annual average increase in the unauthorized population was 515,000. 72 percent of unauthorized immigrants were from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America; 12 percent were from Asia. California’s share of the country’s unauthorized population declined during these six years from 30 to 25 percent due to geographic dispersion.

This report, of course, is consistent with the many other studies showing a greater dispersion of Mexican migrant -- and other immigrant communities -- across the United States, including in parts of the South and Midwest that previously had not seen much in terms of immigration.  For a link to the report, check out Taxin's blog.

KJ

September 1, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

UNHCR to Provide Food to Iraqi Refugees in Syria

The Associated Press reports:

The United Nations launched a food assistance program in Syria on Saturday to help thousands of Iraqi refugees who have fled to the country.

The program, sponsored by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and the World Food Program, will initially benefit some 35,000 refugees from over 9,000 families, the two U.N. agencies said in a statement.

"Food will be provided to families who need it most," said Lauren Jolles, the UNHCR representative in Syria. "This is just the beginning. We hope to include all families who are in need."

The aid, consisting of canned food, rice and sugar, will be distributed by the Syrian Red Crescent on a monthly basis and is expected to reach 50,000 Iraqi refugees by the end of 2007, according to the statement.

Syria is home to some 1.5 million Iraqi refugees, many of whom have fled violence in their home country following the U.S.-led war to topple Saddam Hussein. Click here for the rest of the story.

bh

September 1, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, August 31, 2007

SSA No-Match Letter Rule Temporarily Halted

Judge Issues Order After Lawsuit Is Filed by AFL-CIO, ACLU, and National Immigration Law Center

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 31, 2007

CONTACT:  Ana Avendaño, AFL-CIO, (202) 431-9743; [email protected]   Maria Archuleta, ACLU, (917) 892-9180; [email protected]  Stella Richardson, ACLU-NC, (415) 845-3042; [email protected] Marielena Hincapié, NILC,  (415) 845-3403; [email protected]

SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge today issued an order temporarily blocking the government from implementing a new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) rule that would cause U.S. citizens and other authorized workers to lose their jobs, and which would illegally use error-prone social security records as a tool for immigration enforcement. The judge's order also stops the Social Security Administration (SSA) from beginning to send notices on Tuesday to approximately 140,000 employers across the country notifying them of the new rule, which would impact approximately eight million workers.

The order comes as a result of a lawsuit filed on Wednesday by the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) and the Central Labor Council of Alameda County along with other local labor movements. A hearing on the groups' request to permanently bar the implementation of the DHS rule is scheduled for October 1 before U.S. District Court Judge Charles Breyer.

"We are very pleased that the judge recognized the need to halt the implementation of this ill-advised DHS rule," said John Sweeney, President of the AFL-CIO. "Employers have historically used SSA 'no-match' letters to exploit workers and this rule would only give them a stronger pretext for doing more of the same."

In the lawsuit, the groups charge that the misguided rule violates the law and workers' rights and imposes burdensome obligations on employers who receive SSA "no-match" letters that inform them of alleged discrepancies between employee records and the SSA database.

U.S. District Judge Maxine M. Chesney found that the groups "raised serious questions as to whether the new Department of Homeland Security rule is inconsistent with statute and beyond the statutory authority of the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration."

"The court found the balance of hardships tips sharply in favor of staying the rule while it is being challenged," said Scott A. Kronland of Altshuler Berzon LLP, who argued at today's hearing. "We are confident we will prevail when the court hears the case on the merits."

Currently, employers who receive "no-match" letters stating that their employees' identification documents don't match SSA records are not required to take any action. The new DHS rule would impose liability on employers based on failure to respond to an SSA "no-match" letter, even though SSA errors are caused by many innocent factors such as typographical errors and name changes due to marriage or divorce, and the use of multiple surnames, which is common in many parts of the world. According to the Office of the Inspector General in SSA, 12.7 million of the 17.8 million discrepancies in SSA's database - more than 70% - belong to native-born U.S. citizens.  Under the DHS rule, employers might be required to fire employees whose erroneous SSA records are not fixed within 90 days after the "no-match" letter is sent. The DHS rule would threaten jobs of U.S. citizens and other legally authorized workers simply because of errors in the government's inaccurate social security earnings database.

"This is a crucial and significant first step in challenging this rule, which would be a bureaucratic and costly nightmare for employers and many U.S. citizens and other legally authorized workers," said Lucas Guttantag, Director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project.

"Today's ruling takes us one step closer to an eventual finding that the DHS rule is unlawful. This is a great Labor Day victory for the millions of workers who would have been affected by no-match notice letters being sent out next week," said Marielena Hincapié, Staff Attorney and Director of Programs at NILC.

Today's order was handed down in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.

In addition to the AFL-CIO, which is represented by the law firm of Altshuler Berzon, LLP, other parties bringing the lawsuit include the Central Labor Council of Alameda County, represented by the ACLU, the ACLU of Northern California, and NILC, as well as the San Francisco Labor Council and the San Francisco Building and Construction Trades Council, represented by Weinberg, Roger and Rosenfeld.

In addition to Guttentag and Hincapié, lawyers on the case include Stephen Berzon, Scott Kronland, Jonathan Weissglass, Linda Lye and Danielle Leonard of Altshuler, Berzon; Jonathan Hiatt, James Copess and Ana Avendaño of the AFL-CIO; Jennifer Chang, Mόnica M. Ramírez, and Omar Jadwat of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project; Alan Schlosser and Julia Mass of the ACLU of Northern California; Linton Joaquin and Monica Guizar of NILC; and David Rosenfeld and Manjari Chawla of Weinberg, Roger and Rosenfeld. 

The complaint can be found at: http://www.nilc.org/immsemplymnt/SSA_Related_Info/suit_complaint.pdf

The order issued today can be found at:         

http://www.nilc.org/immsemplymnt/SSA_Related_Info/Chesney_Order_TRO.pdf

bh

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

On the Civility of the Debate Over Immigration

On Tuesday in a classroom at Holy Family High School, in Broomfield, Colorado, a classroom discussion started with the seemingly innocuous question: "Why do students need to learn Spanish?" According to the Archdiocese of Denver, the conversation soon became about immigration and it turned ugly. " At least one e-mail sent to 9NEWS in Colorado said that at least one student started a chant of "white power" and some said that all Mexicans should go back to Mexico. In the understatement of the day, a spokesperson for the Archdiocese of denver stated that "Immigration is an explosive topic right now. It seeped into the classroom."

KJ

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (1)

OIS Estimates 11.6 Million Undocumented in 2006

NEW! ESTIMATES OF THE UNAUTHORIZED IMMIGRANT POPULATION

The Office of Immigration Statistics (OIS) would like to announce the release of *Estimates of the Unauthorized Immigrant Population Residing in the United States: January 2006*. This report provides estimates of the unauthorized immigrant population residing in the United States (11.6 million) as of January 2006, for periods of entry and leading countries of birth and states of residence. The PDF is available on the OIS website at:

http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/statistics/publications/ill_pe_2006.pdf

bh

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Kansas University Fees Law Upheld

AP reports that a group of students paying out-of-state tuition to attend college in Kansas cannot challenge a state law allowing some undocumented immigrants to pay lower in-state tuition, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ruled. The ruling dealt with whether the plaintiffs had standing to challenge the 2004 Kansas law and did not address the law's merits. A trial judge in Kansas had ruled the students lacked standing to challenge the law because they did not face a ''concrete and imminent'' injury. The Tenth Circuit  agreed. The plaintiffs, all U.S. citizens who did not live in Kansas, argued the state violated their constitutional rights by offering undocumented residents who were residents of Kansas the same in-state fees paid by other Kansas residents.  For a copy of the Tenth Circuuit's opinion, click Download day_v. Sebelius 10 8-30-07.pdf

UMKC law professor Kris Kobach (for a past story about him, click here), handled the appeal for the plaintiffs.  Kobach also handled the trial for the City of Hazleton in Lozano v. City of Hazleton, in which a federal district struck down Hazleton's immigration ordinance.

KJ

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Is the Future of Legal Scholarship in the Blogosphere?

in "Is the Future of Legal Scholarship in the Blogosphere?," Margaret A. Schilt in Legal Times writes blogging and the legal academy:

"If you are looking for the future of legal scholarship, chances are that you may find it not in a treatise or the traditional law review but in a different form, profoundly influenced by the blogosphere. Law-related blogs are proliferating on the Internet -- more than 80 are listed on the blogroll of one popular law-related blog, Concurring Opinions. A significant number of the blogs . . . -- are hosted by law professors."

The article talks about blogging as scholarship and as possible professional service.  I may be a traditionalist but I tend to agree with Brian Leiter that most blogging does not qualify as scholarship.  Some of us bloggers, however, like to think we perform a general service by providing information and insights into the subjects on which we blog.

KJ 

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Class Action Filed to End "Widow Penalty"

The L.A. Times reports on a new class action:

"Dahianna Heard's husband was fatally shot while working for a private security contractor in Iraq.

Raquel Williams' husband died of sleep apnea and heart problems.

Ana Maria Moncayo-Gigax's husband was killed in a car crash while on duty with the U.S. Border Patrol.

All three women were waiting for their permanent residency, but their U.S. citizen spouses died before the applications were approved. Immigration authorities later denied the cases because the women were no longer married to U.S. citizens.

The three are part of a class-action lawsuit, filed Thursday in federal court in Los Angeles, that seeks to end the `widow penalty' and asks the court to compel immigration authorities to reopen their cases."

The class action is based on a U.S. Court of Appeals of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruling in 2006 that a noncitizen did not automatically lose her eligibility to become a lawful permanent resident because of the death of her spouse.  In a scholarly opinion by Judge Raymond Fisher, a long time law firm partner before being appointed to the federal bench, the Ninth Circuit held that a noncitizen who had filed for adjustment of status remained eligible to become a lawful permanent resident even though her sponsor U.S. citizen husband had died (tragically and unexpectedly in a car accident).  See Freeman v. Gonzales, 444 F.3d 1031 (9th Cir. 2006). For the Ninth Circuit's latest ruling in the case of Freeman case, click here.

KJ

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Filipino Veterans Equity Campaign

Message from Filipinos for Affirmative Action:

Dear Friends:

As the Congressional summer recess comes to a close, the Filipino Veterans Equity Campaign is gearing up for what we hope is the final stage of our effort to win equal status and benefits for the Filipino WWII veterans.

We have successfully gotten the Filipino WWII Veterans Equity Act of 2007 (HR760 & S57) through the Senate and House Veterans Affairs Committees in the period between February 1 and July 30. This is a historic achievement in our 60-year effort to win equal veterans status for Filipino WWII veterans.

Now, the bill will likely come up for a floor vote in both the House and Senate this Fall. Once it passes there, we're on to White House for signature into law. Our goal is to get President Bush to sign by December 2007!

To learn more about the Filipinos WWII Veterans Equity Campaign, please contact FAA at (510) 465-9876 or visit the National Alliance's for Filipino Veterans Equity (NAFVE's) site, by clicking here.

bh

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Immigrant of the Day: Garo Yepremian (Cyprus)

Garo Garabed "Garo" Sarkis Yepremian (born June 2, 1944) is a former National Football League placekicker (1966-81). Yepremian played for the Detroit Lions, Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Yepremian was born in Larnaca, Cyprus. At the age of sixteen, he moved to London, England. Yepremian later moved to Indianapolis, Indiana, hoping to earn a college scholarship playing football. However, Yepremian's brief experience as a professional soccer player prevented him from playing college football per NCAA rules. Nevertheless, he continued to practice kicking at Butler University, where he was discovered and signed by the Detroit Lions.

In his rookie year, Yepremian broke a record by kicking six field goals in a single game for the Lions against the Minnesota Vikings.  In the 1974 Pro Bow,l Yepremian kicked five field goals to lead the AFC to a win, and was voted Most Valuable Player in that game. He was elected to another Pro Bowl in 1979 after a season in which he kicked twenty consecutive field goals without a miss. Over his career, Yepremian was successful on 210 of 313 field goals and 444 of 464 extra points for a total of 1,074 points. He led the league in field-goal accuracy three times.  Yepremian was voted Kicker of the Decade by both the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Sports Illustrated.

Yepremian is perhaps best known for two feats — one famous, one infamous. In a divisional playoff game against the Kansas City Chiefs on Christmas 1971, he kicked a 37-yard field goal in double overtime, ending the longest game in NFL history and sending the Dolphins to the AFC Championship game.   Many remember Yepremian for an incident in Super Bowl VII. With his team leading the Washington Redskins 14-0, Yepremian was set to kick a field goal with slightly more than two minutes left. The field goal attempt was blocked, and Yepremian managed to get to the ball. Instead of just falling on the ball, he picked it up and frantically attempted to throw a pass. The ball slipped from his hands and went straight up in the air. Yepremian then batted it back up in the air, and it went right into the arms of Redskins cornerback Mike Bass, who returned it for a touchdown. The Dolphins managed to hold on to win 14-7 to preserve their perfect season.

Yepremian is currently a motivational speaker and the author of several books including an autobiography titled I Keek a Touchdown (1995). He is also the Founder & CEO of The Garo Yepremian Foundation for Brain Tumor Research.

KJ

August 31, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Immigration on the Other Side of the Pond: Part II

Kalhan Bill Hing posted this morning about the Tory push for immigration restrictions in the UK.  As is often the case, we have much to learn from the old country about immigration.  Anil Kalhan has a fascinating post on Dorf on Law on the recent decision by the Garda Síochána, the Irish national police, to ban a Sikh trainee from wearing his turban while on duty . Ireland, which for a long time had been a country of tremendous emigration, has experienced remarkable changes in its migration patterns in recent years, especially as economic growth has created a significant demand for migrant labor. In 1996, Ireland became a country of net immigration for the first time, the last European Union member state to do so. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the road has not been without its bumps -- as in other countries, including the United States, increased immigration has led to both anxiety and confusion among some native-born Irish citizens over the pace and extent of change.  Kalhan's analysis thus is relevant to the national debate over immigration in the United States.

KJ

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Texas Monthly on the Feb. 2005 Border Patrol shootings

This months issue of Texas Monthly has a detailed story about the case of Border Patrol Agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean, who were convicted for their role in shooting  -- and covering up the shooting of -- an unarmed man on the Texas-Mexico Border (Pamela Coloff, "Badges of Dishonor").  The victim of the shooting was later determined to have been attempting to smuggle  large quantities of drugs across the border, but this was not known to the agents at the time of the shooting.

Among other things, Coloff's article provides another look at Lou Dobbs' distorted reporting on this particular issue, providing another example of the ways in which he has relied upon lopsided reporting to inflame anti-immigrant sentiment and to dehumanize immigrants:

Two months before Ramos and Compean were set to be sentenced, Lou Dobbs introduced the case to a national audience ....Correspondent Casey Wian walked through the incident with Ramos, who recounted his version of events: hearing gunfire, finding his fellow agent lying on the ground, and then firing his weapon when the suspect pointed what appeared to be a gun. “[The public] entrusted me to stop a drug smuggler and I did,” he said. CNN’s viewers were never told that Ramos had failed to report the shooting, that Compean had tampered with key evidence, or that Aldrete-Davila had attempted to surrender—facts that were readily available to anyone who had read the indictment or newspaper coverage of the case.

Dobbs .... highlight[ed] the case on no fewer than 131 broadcasts in the eleven months that followed, including an hour-long special called “Border Betrayal.” Rather than delve into the specifics of the case, the show gave ample airtime to a rotation of family members, defense attorneys, lawmakers, and anti-illegal immigration activists who argued that the agents should never have been prosecuted. Dobbs injected his own nativist bent into the conversation, as when he reflected on whether the federal government had prosecuted Ramos and Compean because of “the influence of a powerful drug cartel”  or was “blighting the lives of these two outstanding Border Patrol agents to appease the government of Mexico.”

This is not the first time I've mentioned Dobbs' heavily biased reporting, and I'm afraid it won't be the last.  Perhaps giving people the facts won't change their mind, but I agree with the NY Times' David Leonhardt: if Dobbs' stories about immigration are really so good, he shouldn't be afraid to put the facts on the table.  He's CNN!

-jmc

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBack (1)

Immigration on the Other Side of the Pond

Controlling immigration to the UK will lead to greater community cohesion, the Tories said.

Shadow immigration minister Damian Green said a "firm immigration policy" was necessary to enable local authorities to provide services for people arriving in the country.

Tory leader David Cameron said that immigration into Britain had been "too high" and called for "tough and rigorous" action to control the numbers coming in.

Mr Green, speaking on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, said recent waves of immigration had put public services under strain. He said: "Local authorities in various parts of the country have pointed out the difficulties. Click here for the rest of the story.

bh

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Immigrant of the Day: Jennifer Mulhern Granholm (Canada)

Granholm Jennifer Mulhern Granholm (born February 5, 1959 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada) is the current Governor of the U.S. state of Michigan. A Democrat, Granholm became Michigan's first female governor on January 1, 2003 and was relected in 2006.

Granholm's family moved from Canada to California when she was four. As a young adult, she unsuccessfully attempted to launch a Hollywood acting careerl. In 1980, she became a U.S. citizen, worked for John Anderson's independent run for U.S. President, and enrolled at the UC Berkeley. After graduating from Berkeley in 1984, she earned her Juris Doctor degree from Harvard Law School. She then clerked for U.S. Judge Damon Keith on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

In 1986 she married current First Gentleman Daniel Mulhern, a Michigan native, and took his surname as her middle name. In 1990, she became an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. In 1994, she was appointed Wayne County Corporation Counsel.

Granholm was elected Michigan Attorney General in 1998, the first female to hold that position, serving for until 2002. In the election of 2002, she defeated former Governor James Blanchard and US House Democratic Whip David Bonior in the Democratic primary, and then went on to win the general election.

KJ

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

U.S. Citizen, Coincidentally a Mexican-American, Jailed as "Illegal"

AliciaThe Dallas Star-Telegram reports that a native Texan spent the night in an Arlington Jail, missed her children's first day of school,and feared being deported after authorities mistook her for an undocumented immigrant.  A U.S. citizen born in Dallas, Texas, Alicia Rodriguez, an accountant and mother of three, has the same name and date of birth as a woman deported to Mexico three times. "I was told I was waiting for an [immigration] officer or Border Patrol officer to interview me and then move me to another location. It was very scary," the Mansfield woman said.

Now some might say that all Texans are "foreigners" who should be deported but that is not the law.  It does seem a funny coincidence that Alicia Rodriguez just happened to have a Spanish surname and be Mexican American, like many other Texans (and U.S. citizens).

KJ

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Have You No Shame, Virginia Republicans? Va. Republican Bill (the Anti-DREAM Act) Would Bar Illegal Immigrants From College

The Washington Post reports that Virginia Republicans announced legislation Wednesday that would prohibit public colleges and universities from accepting undocumented immigrants even if they attended a public high school and were brought to the United States at an early age by their parents. GOP leaders, who control both houses of the legislature, suggested that some Virginia residents are being denied access to college because too many illegal immigrants are taking available slots.

Souunds like the anti-DREAM Act to me.  We can only hope that it goes down in flames for its mean-spiritedness and for being bad economic and labor policy.  One reader writes "Education sounds like it may be in the process of becoming the `new' property -- these kinds of laws remind of the Alien land Laws, except instead of prohibiting alien ownership of land; they prohibit `ownership' of the `new' property -- college degrees."

KJ

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

New SSRN Articles

"Secularism and Human Rights: A Contextual Analysis of Headscarves, Religious Expression, and Women's Equality Under International Law" Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, Vol. 45, No. 2, 2007.  KARIMA BENNOUNE Rutgers - School of Law  Full Text: http://ssrn.com/abstract=989066

"Migration and Reinterpreted Sovereignty in the US and Mexico: Inspiration from Third World Transnational National Identities" ERNESTO HERNANDEZ LOPEZ Chapman University School of Law. Abstract: http://ssrn.com/abstract=985221

"Refugees: On the Economics of Political Migration".  PETER V. SCHAEFFER West Virginia University Full Text: http://ssrn.com/abstract=989646

"Refugee Roulette: Disparities in Asylum Adjudication" Stanford Law Review, Vol. 60, 2008 Contact: JAYA RAMJI-NOGALES Temple University - James E. Beasley School of Law; ANDREW SCHOENHOLTZ Georgetown University Law Center; PHILIP G. SCHRAG Georgetown University Law Center. Full Text: http://ssrn.com/abstract=983946

"African Migration to Europe: Obscured Responsibilities and Common Misconceptions" GIGA Working Paper No. 49.  DIRK KOHNERT German Institute of Global and Area Studies (GIGA).  Full Text: http://ssrn.com/abstract=989960

KJ

August 30, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Resistance to the Immigration Status Quo

It is perhaps an understatement to say that we have seen some pretty nasty things in the realm of immigration over the last year or so.  But there is some resistance.  Yesterday, we posted a story about a Latino economic boycott of Prince William County in response to its new immigration ordinance.  Here are a few examples of pushback from immigrants and their supporters from today's news.

Suit over Fee Increase

The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) has filed a lawsuit for Declaratory Relief and an injunction in federal court against Michael Chertoff and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for improperly raising citizenship fees. The story regarding the lawsuit is here.  A copy of the Complaint is here.

Suit Over New Enforcement Policies

The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) and the Central Labor Council of Alameda County along with other local labor movements today filed a lawsuit charging that a new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) rule will threaten jobs of U.S. citizens and other legally authorized workers simply because of errors in the government's inaccurate social security earnings databases. The rule violates workers' rights and imposes burdensome obligations on employers who receive Social Security Administration (SSA) "no-match" letters that inform an employer of alleged discrepancies between employee records and the SSA database. Under the new rule, many U.S. citizens and legally authorized workers could be required to be terminated if their erroneous SSA records are not fixed within 90 days of an SSA "no-match" letter being sent to an employer. The rule is scheduled to go into effect on September 14.   According to the Office of the Inspector General in SSA, 12.7 million of the 17.8 million discrepancies in SSA's database - more than 70% - belong to native-born U.S. citizens.

The lawsuit requests a court order preventing DHS and SSA from implementing the new DHS rule, including the initial mailing of 'no-match' letter packets scheduled to go out to employers on September 4, until a decision on the rule's legality can be reached. The lawsuit also requests a finding that the rule is invalid. The lawsuit was filed today in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. In addition to the AFL-CIO, which is represented by the law firm of Altshuler Berzon, LLP, other parties bringing the lawsuit include the Central Labor Council of Alameda County, represented by the ACLU, the ACLU of Northern California, and NILC, as well as the San Francisco Labor Council and the San Francisco Building and Construction Trades Council, represented by Weinberg, Roger and Rosenfeld. In addition to Guttentag and Hincapié, lawyers on the case include Stephen Berzon, Scott Kronland, Jonathan Weissglass, Linda Lye and Danielle Leonard of Altshuler, Berzon; Jonathan Hiatt, James Copess and Ana Avendaño of the AFL-CIO; Jennifer Chang, Mόnica M. Ramírez, and Omar Jadwat of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project; Alan Schlosser and Julia Mass of the ACLU of Northern California; Linton Joaquin and Monica Guizar of NILC; and David Rosenfeld and Manjari Chawla of Weinberg, Roger and Rosenfeld. The complaint can be found here.

Consumer Boycott?

Associated Press reports that, after splintering over a year ago, two Los Angeles immigrant coalitions joined forces Tuesday while calling for a Sept. 12 consumer boycott in favor of immigration reform. The groups said they united after the Aug. 19 arrest and deportation of Elvira Arellano, who lived in a Chicago church for a year to avoid deportation. Arellano was detained by immigration agents outside Los Angeles' Our Lady Queen of Angels church near Olvera Street. The massive marches across America in the spring of 2006 brought new clout to immigrant organizing groups, but bitter infighting and rifts soon followed. While the March 25 Coalition called for and helped organized May 1 boycotts the past two years, the We Are America Coalition in Los Angeles has focused more on citizenship and voter registration drives, along with lobbying Congress. Both said they were forming the Los Angeles We are All Elvira and Saulito Coalition, and planned to organize a consumer boycott in Los Angeles.

KJ

August 29, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

ILRC Fall Seminars

The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) offers educational seminars throughout the year taught by our expert immigration staff attorneys. These seminars will provide you with the most up-to-date information about immigration issues and give you the skills you need to assist your clients.

“I am a sole practitioner whose focus is on family based immigration law; ILRC seminars are the best and I do everything I can to not miss a single one. Not only do they go over the law, but also how it is applied and argued by attorneys in immigration court or the CIS office.” Emilia Banuelos, Esq.

“The ILRC’s continuing legal education seminars provide a good combination of practical & theoretical legal expertise, with enthusiastic instructors dedicated to keeping current on immigration law & concrete issues confronted by the legal service providers” David J. Pasternak, Esq.

Cancellation of Removal for Nonpermanent Residents and How to Analyze “Exceptional and Extremely Unusual Hardship”
Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2pm–5pm, SFSU Downtown Campus, San Francisco
Fees: Regular $135; Non-profit $65; ILOTA $30

Learn how to prepare successful Cancellation of Removal cases for Nonpermanent Residents under INA §240A(b). 2.75 MCLE
To register for this seminar, go here

Essential Elements of Immigration Law
New dates! Wednesdays, Sept 19, 26, Oct 3, 10, 17, 24, 3:30pm-7pm, Duane Morris LLP, San Francisco
Fees: Regular $420; Non-profit $200; ILOTA $200

Back by popular demand, this comprehensive six-session course will be led by Don Ungar, who is not only well-known for his fresh and innovative approach to immigration law over the past four decades, but also for his talent as a skilled teacher of immigration law. 19.5 MCLE
To register for this seminar, go here

How to Prepare a Winning Waiver of Inadmissibility
Thursday, Sept. 27, 2pm–5pm, SFSU Downtown Campus, San Francisco
Fees: Regular $135; Non-profit $65; ILOTA $30

Learn to analyze the most common grounds of admissibility and how to argue waivers, establish “extreme hardship,” incorporate effective client interview tactics to elicit information establishing hardship and find supporting documentation to support hardship claims. 2.75 MCLE
To register for this seminar, go here

Child Status Protection Act Made Simple
Monday, Oct. 1, 2pm–5pm, The Center at Cathedral Plaza, Los Angeles
Thursday, Oct. 4, 2pm–5pm, SFSU Downtown Campus, San Francisco
Fees: Regular $135; Non-profit $65; ILOTA $30

This seminar will provide a detailed explanation of the CSPA as it applies to family-based and employment-based visas, VAWA, and refugee/asylee derivatives. Through the use of examples and hypothetical exercises, participants will learn simple, practical applications of the law. 2.75 MCLE
To register for the LA seminar, go here To register for the SF seminar, go here

Advanced VAWA Training
Friday, Oct. 19, 9am–5pm, SFSU Downtown Campus, San Francisco
Friday, Oct. 26, 9am–5pm, The Center at Cathedral Plaza, Los Angeles
Fees: Regular $235; Non-profit $125; ILOTA $40

An advanced training for attorneys and BIA accredited representatives covering the latest VAWA-specific provisions, policies, and practice tips related to adjustment of status, criminal and immigration-related inadmissibility and good moral character bars, motions to reopen and U visa cases. 6.5 MCLE
To register for the SF seminar, go here To register for the LA seminar, go here

Crimes and Immigration Seminar
Saturday, Oct. 27, 9am–5pm, Golden Gate University School of Law, San Francisco
New date! Saturday, Nov. 17, 9am–5pm, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles

This interactive program on defending non-citizens features newly designed and updated sessions on the immigration consequences of crimes, intensive exercises, and break-out groups for criminal and immigration lawyers. 6.5 MCLE
To register for this seminar, visit www.CriminalAndImmigrationLaw.com

Remedies for Victims of Immigration Fraud
Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2pm–5pm, SFSU Downtown Campus, San Francisco
Fees: Regular $135; Non-profit $65; ILOTA $30

This seminar will address the problems of immigration fraud and what you can do for clients who have been victimized by immigration fraud. 2.75 MCLE
To register for this seminar, go here

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Sai Suzuki, Marketing Coordinator, at [email protected]

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August 29, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)