Saturday, February 12, 2011

Howard University Attacks Anti-Immigrant Bigotry

From Howard University:

Thursday night, in honor of the Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, Howard University’s NAACP chapter hosted a documentary screening and student panel on controversial Arizona law SB1070 and the rise of the anti-immigrant movement.

Howard University students have been central to a student movement dedicated to taking on the anti-immigrant movement. In August of 2010, Howard University students participated in a student delegation to Arizona in order to get a deeper perspective on SB1070.  Upon returning, they organized a speaking tour at historically black colleges and universities on the east coast entitled, “No More Arizonas.”

The tour addressed SB1070 copycat laws being introduced in states across the country and the network of anti-immigrant organizations known as the John Tanton Network.

The Tanton Network is a constellation of anti-immigrant organizations all founded or funded by John Tanton. Back in 1979, Tanton founded the Federation for American Immigration Reform.  Now the nation’s leading anti-immigrant organization, FAIR has taken credit for drafting SB1070. The Pioneer Fund, a foundation that has a history of promoting the genetic superiority of white, European-Americans, gave John Tanton $1.2 million to seed his modern day anti-immigrant empire.

Continue article at


February 12, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

News Flash: Refugees Fleeing Violence in Tunisia Result in Emergency Declared by Italy

Map courtesy of WordTravels

Italy's government reportedly (and here) called a humanitarian emergency on Saturday after thousands of asylum-seekers sailed across the Meditarranean from Tunisia. "The cabinet today . . . has proclaimed a state of humanitarian emergency following the influx of the large number of citizens from North Africa," the government said in a statement. The statement said that the decision to call an official emergency would enable civil protection officers "to take immediate action needed to control this phenomenon and assist citizens who have fled from North Africa."

Politically-charged violence, which first hit the international media weeks ago, continues to plague Tunisia.


February 12, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Here We Go Again: Immigration Stupidity from Arizona, State and Governor Brewer Counterclaim Against U.S. Government


Arizona and its Governor apparently will do whatever it can to stay in the immigration news.  As Professor Cruz reported yesterday, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, who was recently re-elected Governor despite a stunning debate performance (or lack therof), has counterclaimed against the U.S. government for allegedly failing to control the border and enforce the U.S. immigration laws; Arizona seeks hundreds of millions of dollars of damages for the alleged costs of undocumented immigration. 

Among other things, the lawsuit claims that the federal government has failed to protect Arizona from an "invasion" of undocumented immigrants and seeks reimbursements and more border enforcement.   Similar suits have failed in the past.  See, e.g., Wilson v. United States, 104 F.3d 1086 (9th Cir. 1997) (rejecting claim by state that federal government failed to guarantee republican form of government under Invasion and Guarantee Clauses of Article IV of U.S. Constitution by failing to stop undocumented immigration into state); Chiles v. United States, 69 F.3d 1094 (11th Cir. 1995), cert. denied, 517 U.S. 1188 (1996) (same).

Arizona filed the counterclaim in the U.S. government's suit challenging Arizona's controversial immigration law known as SB 1070. So far, the courts, in response to the suits by the U.S. government and others, has enjoined the bulk of the law from going into effect.  The injunction entered by the distric=t court is currently under review in the Ninth Circuit, which heard oral arguments last November.   

For a NPR report on Arizona's counterclaim, click here.  For the Governor's press release, see Download PR_021011_Counterclaim[1]  For the State's explanation of the claims, see Download PR_021011_CounterclaimSummary[1]

Arizona's expansion of the federal lawsuit challenging SB 1070 has already drawn fire.  The following is a statement from Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum:

“Today, Governor Jan Brewer upped the ante in her virulent war of words with the federal government. Brewer’s lawsuit cites, among other things, a ‘failure to protect Arizona from invasion.’ This is only the latest in Brewer’s dishonest comments on immigration. This summer she repeatedly and falsely claimed that headless bodies had been found in the desert, a reason she cited for signing SB 1070. She also repeatedly trumped up claims of border violence, despite official and overwhelming evidence that the American border cities are among the safest in the nation.

Let’s be clear: Governor Brewer’s countersuit is a cheap political stunt and a waste of time. Her choice of words is particularly inflammatory in a state that needs no more rhetorical gasoline. While we agree with Governor Brewer that the federal government has failed to address the broken immigration system, we disagree with her poor judgment, her over the top and dishonest rhetoric, and her decision to waste even more tax dollars on a battle that should never have been waged.

SB1070 has been ruinous for Arizona’s reputation and today’s announcement will only sully it further. It is a pity that Governor Brewer will spend state money, time, and energy on this lawsuit while Arizona’s unemployment rate of 9.4% is well over the national average and the state’s $1.15 billion budget deficit means severe cuts to Arizona health care programs, higher education, and law enforcement. Brewer and other state elected officials should focus instead on compelling their congressional delegations to pass comprehensive immigration reform so that we can end illegal immigration once and for all and restore the rule of law.”


February 11, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Undocumented Males Must Register for the Military Selective Service

From the U.S. Selective Service:


Selective Service does not collect any information which would indicate whether or not you are undocumented. You want to protect yourself for future U.S. citizenship and other government benefits and programs by registering with Selective Service. Do it today.

If you are a man ages 18 through 25 and living in the U.S., then you must register with Selective Service. It’s the law. According to law, a man must register with Selective Service within 30 days of his 18th birthday. Selective Service will accept late registrations but not after a man has reached age 26. You may be denied benefits or a job if you have not registered. You can register at any U.S. Post Office and do not need a social security number.  Read more...


February 11, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

ILRC Webinars and Seminars

Immigrant Legal Resource Center Spring 2011 Seminar & Webinar Calendar
See entire calendar & register:
Can’t make it to our webinars?
 You can purchase webinar recordings on a disc that can be viewed on your computer!
To purchase, click on the webinar topic you are interested in below.
● Waivers at Ciudad Juárez: February 16, 2011, 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm PST
● Citizenship for Children: March 1, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PST
● The Effect of a Long Absence from the U.S. on Naturalization Applications: March 24, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PDT
● Family Immigration Basics: April 5, 2011, 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm PDT
● T Visa Applications and Procedures: April 28, 2011, 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm PDT
● Inadmissibility and Hardship: May 26, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PDT
● How to Defend LPRs from Removal: June 9, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PDT
● U Visa & VAWA Webinar Series: Register for all three for a discount
     ● Advanced Issues and Hot Topics in U Visas: March 9, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PST
     ● Advanced Issues and Hot Topics in VAWA Cases: April 6, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PDT
     ● Nuts and Bolts of Filing for U Nonimmigrant Status: May 2, 2011, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm PDT

● Essential Elements of Immigration Law (Los Angeles): March 3 & 10, 2011, 1:00 pm – 5:30 pm
   March 4 & 11, 2011, 9:00 am – 1:00 pm (Thursdays & Fridays)
● Advanced Issues and Hot Topics in U Visa and VAWA Cases:
     ● Los Angeles: March 22, 2011, 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
     ● San Francisco: April 27, 2011, 1:30 pm – 5:00 pm
The Immigrant Legal Resource Center is a State Bar of California approved MCLE provider.
Employees of California IOLTA organizations: Contact Sai Suzuki at to receive an IOLTA registration form.


February 11, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Arizona to Counter Sue Federal Government

If you want to go up in the polls in Arizona or distract folks from the state economic woes--go after the usual suspects.  Not to be out done by the AZ legislature, Governor Brewer and Attorney General Horne announced today their plans to sue the federal government over immigration.  to read the story click here.


February 10, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Northern Illinois Conference: Immigration Enforcement: Laws and "Outlaws"


Northern Illinois University College of Law will host Immigration Enforcement:  Laws and "Outlaws" on Thursday, March 3, 2011 from 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. at the NIU College of Law in the Francis X. Riley Courtroom.

This symposium on immigration and homeland security law will feature presentations from a panel of leading experts on a breadth of topics including the Fourteenth Amendment and Birthright Citizenship; media treatment of immigrants; litigation brought by immigrants’ advocates against Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE); and state efforts to enforce internal immigration law, with special focus on the controversial Arizona SB1070.

The symposium will feature keynote speaker Lt. Col. Margaret Stock (ret. US Army) from the University of Alaska Anchorage. It will also include presentations from Professor Gabriel Chin and Dr. Celeste Gonzalez de Bustamante of the University of Arizona, as well as Professor Bridget Kessler, Clinical Teaching Fellow from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.

The event will be moderated by NIU College of Law Professor Guadalupe Luna. The symposium is free of charge and open to the public. Lunch will be provided immediately following the symposium in the Thurgood Marshall Gallery. RSVP is required. To RSVP online and/or view detailed information on the symposium presenters, go to or call 815.753.9655. 3 hours of CLE credit will be available for attorneys.


February 10, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Deportation Tax on All Americans: $5 Billion

From America's Voice:

Republican “Deportation Tax” Revealed in Judiciary Committee Hearing

Republicans Demand that Taxpayers Pay Billions of Dollars for Mass Deportation, Instead of Turning Undocumented Immigrants into Taxpayers

Washington – Last month the Immigration Subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee held its first hearing under Republican leadership, titled “ICE Worksite Enforcement – Up to the Job?”  It was the first unveiling of Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX), Immigration Subcommittee Chairman Elton Gallegly (R-CA), and Immigration Subcommittee Vice-Chairman Steve King’s (R-IA) immigration agenda this year. 

Their answer to the question of what to do with the 11 million undocumented immigrants in our country today is a thinly-disguised mass deportation approach.  The hearing revealed the staggering costs that taxpayers would bear to carry out this agenda.  According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), it costs the American taxpayers $12,500 to deport each undocumented immigrant they come across.  That means that the government spent $5 billion last year to deport a record 393,000 immigrants.  We can continue down this path and levy a deportation tax on every American in the country today, or we can pass comprehensive immigration reform that turns undocumented workers and their employers into legal taxpayers.   

Frank Sharry, Executive Director of the America’s Voice Education Fund said, “When it comes to immigration, House Republicans have decided to put ideology ahead of the economy.  Their proposed mass deportation approach would tax every working American today, and spend billions of dollars on deportation.  Or, we can do the rational, practical thing, and require immigrant workers to register with the government and pay taxes on their way to becoming full American citizens.  It’s simple math: either we tax ourselves to deport millions of workers, or we get them in the system paying their fair share of taxes.” 

Analysis by the Center for American Progress found that the costs of mass deportation would drain $2.5 trillion from the economy over ten years.  Compared to enacting comprehensive immigration reform, which would add $1.5 trillion to the GDP over ten years, the fiscally responsible choice is clear.  

Said Sharry, “House Republicans seem hell-bent on taxing Americans to fund their mass deportation obsession, instead of taxing immigrants and their employers.  The smart, effective, and fiscally sound approach is clear.  When will the budget hawks in the party step up and take the wheel from the anti-immigrant ideologues like Smith, Gallegly, and King?” 


February 10, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

New SSRN Immigration Articles

Here are two new immigration articles from scholars on the cutting edge:

"Questioning Hierarchies of Harm: Women, Forced Migration, and International Criminal Law" International Criminal Law Review, 2011 JAYA RAMJI-NOGALES, Temple University - James E. Beasley School of Law.  ABSTRACT:  Though international criminal law has made great strides in addressing harm perpetrated against women in wartime, its gendered structure diverts attention away from other significant harms that women endure as a result of armed conflict. In particular, international criminal law’s hierarchy of harm elevates crimes committed as part of a plan or pattern across political groups over equally serious forms of harm perpetrated randomly, often within political groups. Thus the private and opportunistic harms enabled by situations of displacement and perpetrated against female forced migrants do not fall clearly within the framework of international criminal law. This vacuum of accountability extends beyond international criminal law, as female forced migrants cannot rely on their own governments, their host governments, and often even international humanitarian organizations to protect them against opportunistic violence. International criminal law could fill the void only after quite serious reconstruction, namely expansion of its scope and restructuring of its focus. It may be that a structure designed specifically to prevent and account for opportunistic violence against female forced migrants would be better equipped to perform that task. Criminal accountability might be better performed in national legal systems or informal justice systems created within camp environments. There are also solutions other than criminal accountability, such as human rights law, that might be more appropriate in addressing such harms. In the meantime, until a solution is found that places these ‘private’ crimes on equal footing with ‘public’ attacks currently prohibited by international criminal law, the serious and frequent harms suffered by forcibly displaced women will continue to be overlooked, relegated to the bottom of the hierarchy of harm.

"Immigration as Urban Policy" Fordham Urban Law Review, Vol. 38, p. 363, 2010 RICK SU, University at Buffalo Law School, SUNY Email: Immigration has done more to shape the physical and social landscape of many of America’s largest cities than almost any other economic or cultural force. Indeed, immigration is so central to urban development in the United States that it is a wonder why immigration is not explicitly discussed as an aspect of urban policy. Yet in the national conversation over immigration, one would strain to hear it described in this manner. This essay addresses this oversight by making the case for a reorientation of immigration toward urban policy; and it does so by advocating for an immigration regime that both explicitly recognizes the role of immigration as an instrument of urban development, and sees urban policy as a vital complement to our federal immigration regime. As this essay outlines, there are good reasons for such an urban policy reorientation from the perspective of both urban and immigration policymakers. At the same time, significant obstacles exist, not only in the structure of our immigration laws, but also the prevailing organization of our local governments. Thus, the essay concludes by proposing a reform to our immigration regime that advances the aims of reorienting immigration toward urban policy, addresses the structural obstacles that stand in the way, and suggests further avenues of reform going forward.


February 10, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Republicans Would Deport the Agricultural Industry

From America's Voice:

The Republican Plan to Deport the American Agriculture Industry

E-Verify Without Broader Reform Would Hurt Economy & Make the Nation’s Broken Immigration System Worse

Washington – House Republicans’ mass deportation vision for immigration “reform” will again be on display at the next hearing of the House Immigration Subcommittee.  Tomorrow’s hearing is about expanding E-Verify to all employers in the United States, the centerpiece of the Republicans’ vision for expelling 11 million undocumented immigrants and their families from the country.  Shockingly, if the program worked as Reps. Smith, Gallegly, and King hope, the GOP would essentially deport the entire U.S. agriculture industry and send more of our nation’s food supply—and jobs--overseas.  

Our nation’s agriculture industry is already facing a labor crisis, and is heavily reliant on an existing labor force that is comprised mostly of undocumented immigrants.  The Republicans’ vision for E-Verify would gut the entire sector, leaving food to rot in the fields, driving up prices for American consumers, and outsourcing even more of our food supply and food security.  Given that the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that for every on-farm job in America, there are about 3.1 “upstream” and “downstream” jobs in the nation, the accelerated movement of U.S. agriculture overseas would lead to increased unemployment for Americans as well. 

According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice, “It’s ironic that the so-called ‘pro-business party’ is pushing a policy that would decimate one of the key sectors of the American economy.  Evidently, pandering to radical elements in the GOP that actually believe it’s possible and desirable to deport 11 million undocumented workers is more important than maintaining a home-grown agriculture industry.” 

Compounding the effects on U.S. agriculture, the economic costs of E-Verify and the House Republicans’ mass deportation fantasies would be staggering to American taxpayers, small businesses, and our overall economy.  For example, recent investigative research by Bloomberg found that had a mandatory E-Verify system been in effect in FY2010, it would have cost small businesses $2.6 billion nationwide.  A proposal to mandate E-Verify in 2008 was scored by CBO as costing American taxpayers $17 billion in lost revenues.

Said Sharry, “As part of comprehensive immigration reform, a workable mandatory employment verification system makes sense.  Absent comprehensive reform, however, it would mean the death of the nation’s agriculture industry, hurt the American economy, and drive more jobs either overseas or into the underground economy.  With the prospect of more workers subject to exploitation, bad actor employers must be cheering on Lamar Smith.  Decent employers, especially in agriculture, are wondering if they can survive.”


February 9, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Stanford: Documenting Mexican American & Latino Civil Rights

Documenting Mexican American & Latino Civil Rights, featuring historic archives from MALDEF and CRLA: Stanford is organizing the archives and records in order to make them accessible to researchers. This work will begin in March 2011 and be completed by March 2013. At the end of the project finding aids for both collections will be made available via Stanford's finding aids site and the Online Archive of California.


February 9, 2011 in Books, Current Affairs, Film & Television | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration?

Russell Contreras of the Huffington Post
reports on a new computer game, a soon-to-be released app for IPhones and IPads, which allows users to drive a truck full of immigrants through the desert and try not to have them tossed out is drawing fire from some immigrant advocates. "Smuggle Truck: Operation Immigration," a proposed iPhone and iPad app slated for release in March, lets players navigate through what appears to be the U.S.-Mexican border. As the truck drives over cliffs, mountains and dead animals, immigrants fall off the truck's bed. Scores are calculated by the number of immigrants helped crossing the U.S. border.

Needless to say, controversy has ensued.


February 9, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Birthright Citizenship Debate: Eastman versus Ho

Eastman EPhoto Ho-James

The Citizenship Clause of the 14th Amendment provides that "All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside." What is the proper interpretation of this clause? What does it mean to be "subject to the jurisdiction thereof"? To what extent can states seek to control or alter birthright citizenship?  Experts debate these and other questions in this podcast. Featuring:

•  Dr. John C. Eastman, Donald P. Kennedy Chair in Law and Director of the Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence, Chapman University School of Law.

•  Hon. James C. Ho, Partner, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP, and Former Solicitor General of Texas

•  Moderator: Mr. Dean A. Reuter, Vice President & Director of Practice Groups, The Federalist Society.

To listen to the audio podcast, click here.


February 9, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

New Immigration Article: Fugitive Operations and the Fourth Amendment: Representing Immigrants Arrested in Warrantless Home Raids

Here is a topical article.  Nathan Treadwell's Fugitive Operations and the Fourth Amendment: Representing Immigrants Arrested in Warrantless Home Raids sets out a litigation theory for suppression claims in immigration court after ICE home raids. It has two goals in mind. First, the article hopes to bring attention to an under-litigated area of immigration practice. While suppression cases have obvious limits, they remain the only option for many undocumented immigrants caught up in unlawful enforcement operations. Given the increasing judicial skepticism of ICE's interior enforcement practices, suppression may take on a larger role in immigration court, and will remain a valuable tool for noncitizens without other relief. Second, the article emphasizes the value of suppression litigation in bringing scrutiny--press and political as well as judicial scrutiny--to abusive enforcement practices. While the enforcement landscape has changed somewhat during the Obama administration, the immigration courts have yet to repudiate the legal theories underlying Bush-era efforts to undermine constitutional limitations on enforcement, detention and deportation. The article hopes that suppression claims can help to reinvigorate constitutional debate in the immigration courts and to humanize immigrants in the judiciary's eyes.


February 8, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigrant population has grown by 49 percent or more in 14 southern and western US states

In a new Spotlight on Immigrants in New-Destination States, Migration Policy Institute’s Aaron Terrazas examines the emerging trend of immigrants settling away from the traditional destinations of California, New York, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Illinois, and Massachusetts in favor of states in the southern and western regions of the country. Fourteen states in particular -- South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Delaware, Arkansas, South Dakota, Nevada, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Wyoming, Idaho, Indiana, and Mississippi -- experienced especially high rates of growth in the immigrant population over the past decade, and are thus being termed “new-destination” states for migrants.

Some highlights in the data include:

• Between 2000 and 2009, South Carolina, Alabama, and Tennessee had the fastest growing immigrant populations of all new-destination states. South Carolina experienced 77 percent growth, while both Alabama and Tennessee had 67 percent growth.

• The unauthorized immigrant population in new-destination states grew by 80 percent between 2000 and 2010, from 905,000 to 1.6 million. In traditional-destination states this population grew more slowly over the same period, up by about 40 percent from 2000 levels.

• As of 2009, 42.0 percent of the 3.5 million foreign born residing in new-destination states entered the country since 2000, compared with 28.8 percent of immigrants in traditional-destination states.

• Immigrants in new-destination states are more likely than immigrants in traditional destinations to reside in a household with an annual income below the federal poverty line. Also, the poverty gap between immigrants and the native born is larger in new-destination states than it is in traditional-destination states.

More than 44 percent of the foreign born in new-destination states lacked health insurance coverage in 2009, compared with 14.8 percent of the native born in those same states and 33.5 percent of immigrants in traditional-destination states.


February 8, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

First round goes to the 14th Amendment

The proponents of the AZ birthright bill yesterday were unable to obtain committee approval.  The bill will likely be reasigned to another committee to see if it can proceed to the floor. Click here for the local story.  Intersting to note that the article lays out the argument in favor of the bill but not the counter argument....


February 8, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

More on ICE Focus on Chipotle

From Reuters:

Chipotle Mexican Grill has a lot going for it -- an upscale burrito concept, a hip and eco-friendly image, expansion plans galore and a 500 percent-plus stock price gain in just over two years.

And then it has something not going its way -- a federal crackdown on its immigrant labor force that has so far forced Chipotle to fire hundreds of allegedly undocumented workers in the state of Minnesota, perhaps more than half its staff there.

The probe is widening. Co-Chief Executive Monty Moran told Reuters on Friday that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has also issued "notices of inspection" for restaurants in Washington D.C. and Virginia.

Investors in the Wall Street darling are taking note and one firm, Calvert Investments, plans to talk to Chipotle about the large number of undocumented workers uncovered.

Dependence on undocumented labor is the elephant in the room for the U.S. restaurant business. And experts say the Chipotle ICE investigations are a wake-up call for an industry that is one of America's biggest employers and generates over $300 billion in annual sales, according to research firm IBISWorld Inc. Read more...


February 8, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigrant of the Day: Israel Idonije (Nigeria)


Israel "Izzy" Idonije
(born November 17, 1980) is a defensive end for the National Football League's Chicago Bears. Idonije was born in Lagos, Nigeria and immigrated to Brandon, Manitoba when he was four years old.  Idonije was a Chicago Bears practice squad player at the end of the 2003 season, made the Bears' roster the following year, and has been with the Bears ever since.

The Chicago Bears defensive lineman was nominated for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Awardwhich was won by Madeiu WIlliams (Minnesoata Vikings), yesterday's Immigrant of the Day. The award recognizes both a players skill and community service.Idonije is in his seventh season with the NFC North champion Chicago Bears. His First Down Attendance Program serves more than 600 economically disadvantaged students in five schools in Chicago and Manitoba, Canada.

In honor of his philanthropic efforts, Idonije, is now displayed as part of the three-wall, 8,600 square foot area along the Kennedy Expressway near North Ashland and West Armitage Avenue. The portrait painting honors three of the Chicago recipients of Bank of America’s Neighborhood Excellence Initiative, the company’s signature philanthropic program. The program is part of an ongoing effort to stimulate economic vitality in Chicago and in communities around the nation.back. Israel Idonjie established the Israel Idonije Foundation in 2008 to extend positive, life-changing opportunities to families and individuals in economically disadvantaged communities.

Idonije Wall 


February 8, 2011 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

From the Bookshelves: Citizenship, Borders, and Human Needs Edited by Rogers M. Smith

Citizenship, Borders, and Human Needs Edited by Rogers M. Smith
A volume in the Democracy, Citizenship, and Constitutionalism series.  Edited and with an introduction by political scientist Rogers M. Smith, Citizenship, Borders, and Human Needs brings together essays by an international array of leading scholars from a wide range of disciplines to explore the economic, cultural, political, and normative aspects of comparative immigration policies.


February 8, 2011 in Books, Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

New SSRN Immigration Articles

Here are the latest immigration articles from the Social Science Research Network ( 

"The Transformers: Immigration and Tacit Knowledge Development" NYU Wagner Research Paper No. 2011-01 NATASHA ISKANDER, New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service; NICHOLA LOWE, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - Department of Urban Planning.  ABSTRACT:  Knowledge flows associated with international migration and their relationship to economic development have garnered increasing attention. Regardless of whether these accounts focus on "brain drain," "gain" or "circulation," they tend to focus narrowly on knowledge acquired through formal education and portray migrants as simply transferring the knowledge they bring with them or obtain in receiving communities. Through a study of Mexican construction workers in Philadelphia and Raleigh-Durham, we challenge this view and draw attention to the significant tacit knowledge immigrants possess. We find that as immigrants move their knowledge from one labor market context to another, they change its form and composition so radically that it is more accurate to say that it is transformed, rather than merely transferred. How they do so, however, depends heavily on their engagement with localized labor market structures, workplace practices, and construction materials. To explain this variance, we draw on Polanyi’s original articulation of tacit knowledge as a relational form involving two interconnected knowledge terms, one implicit and one explicit. We argue that migration can sever and reconfigure the cognitive connection forged between the two terms on which tacit knowledge is based. The result is new knowledge that migrants are able to draw on in order to innovate and improve work processes and practices.

"Convergences and Divergences in International Legal Norms on Migrant Labor" Comparative Labor Law&Policy Journal, Vol. 32, p. 405, 2011 Cornell Legal Studies Research Paper No. 11-02 CHANTAL THOMAS, Cornell Law School.  ABSTRACT:  This essay will argue that even where disparate treaties converge doctrinally, they may diverge normatively and that normative divergence may be significant in its own right. Section II considers the normative implications of divergent rule systems. In particular, Section II raises the question of whether the rise of international criminal law, combating forms of illegal migration such as migrant smuggling and trafficking in persons, may support a normative divergence in international migration law between the primacy of the rights of individuals, on the one hand, and the primacy of states, on the other. This normative tension in turn marks a rift still greater than those between trade and labor, or labor and human rights: it represents the polarities of liberal legalism as a jurisprudential framework ultimately transcending sovereignty, or one that protects and legitimates sovereignty. This kind of normative analysis is, of course, highly stylized. Legal regimes do not stand for only one set of norms, but rather reflect contested and complicated histories. International labor law, for example, harbors tensions between the “economic and the social,” that is to say, an emphasis on particular industrial and workplace contexts versus broader aspirations toward justice. Moreover, even where particular principles predominate, this should not be taken to discount the importance of political economy, self-interested bargaining, and historical contingency in allowing those norms to prevail or in influencing the particular ways in which norms continue to develop and change over time. Finally, a consideration of norms explicitly articulated by the treaties or laws in question does not begin to describe their full effect, and formal principles often create substantive effects sharply at odds with their own terms. The treaty regimes analyzed in this article should be studied not only in terms of their internal complexities but also in their external “realworld” impact. Such an analysis is beyond the scope of this essay. Nevertheless, by mapping the array of international legal regimes across human rights, trade, labor, and crime that affect migration, and in describing some of their prevalent doctrinal and normative characteristics, it is hoped that the article might contribute to emerging scholarship on this topic.  BLOGGER'S NOTE:  I ALWAYS FIND PROFESSOR THOMAS'S SCHOLARSHIP WORTH READING.

"Views of European Races Among the Research Staff of the US Immigration Commission and the Census Bureau, Ca. 1910" Levy Economics Institute Working Paper No. 648 JOEL PERLMANN, Bard College - The Levy Economics Institute.  ABSTRACT:  This paper discusses support for, and opposition to, racial classification of European immigrants among high-level researchers at both the United States Immigration Commission of 1907–11 (the Dillingham Commission) and the Census Bureau during those same years. A critical distinction must be made between the Commission members — political appointees who mostly supported some form of restriction at the time of their appointment — and the top research staff, whose views were remarkably wide ranging. Moreover, even staff members committed to a racialized outlook — such as Daniel Folkmar, author of the Commission’s infamous Dictionary of Races and Peoples — deserve a closer look than historians have given them; for example, Folkmar and his superior on the staff had requested commentary from Franz Boas, who was then emerging as the most prestigious academic critic of racial theories (theories that assume group differences in behavior arise from biological endowments). Another feature of the narrative concerns the surprising number of staff who transferred from the Commission to the Census Bureau to work on the 1910 Census. Debates continued at the Bureau as well, this time over how to present the results of the new “mother tongue” question, which had been introduced to the Census questionnaire in response to pressure for a European “race” question. Indeed, Folkmar was also the chief author of the Census Bureau report on the mother-tongue data.  BLOGGER'S NOTE:  THIS PIECE COVERS A FASCINATING PART OF U.S. IMMIGRATION HISTORY ABOUT WHICH TOO MANY AMERICANS ARE UNAWARE OF.

"An Analysis of the United States Employment Immigration System in Attracting and Retaining Skilled Workers and the Effects of its Dichotomous Objectives - Competitiveness Versus Protectionism: A Case for Reform?" VIGNASWARI SAMINATHAN, affiliation not provided to SSRN.  ABSTRACT:  Over the years, two diametric objectives have emerged within the U.S. employment immigration system: protectionist measures to safeguard or protect the interests of the U.S. workers (which have a corollary purpose of protecting the interest of international workers) and competitive measures to attract and retain highly skilled workers. Currently, the system is out of sync in meeting the needs of the (1) U.S. as a global competitor; (2) domestic industry; (3) U.S. workers; and (4) international workers. The quantitative restraints have led to a decade or more wait for legal permanent residence, which is impeding the U.S. from attracting and retaining highly skilled workers. On the other hand, the U.S.’s global competitors are in the position to offer immediate permanent residency or at least permanent residency within a relatively short period of time. The burgeoning new economies, such as in India and China, have an impact on the flow of immigrants. Already there is evidence of reverse brain drain from the U.S. to these countries, although that flow, at present, may have been exacerbated by the deepening worldwide recession. Further compounding these changes is the looming threat of the world’s aging population. All these developments may heighten the competition for highly skilled workers. Moreover, on the domestic level, dissatisfaction with the competitiveness of the immigration system, which has prevented employers from hiring the necessary skilled workers, has caused some of the leading information technology companies to relocate or outsource their work. This, in turn, has serious repercussion to the U.S. economy, as much needed job creation opportunities are lost at the time when they are most needed. Further, the very mechanism utilized to protect the U.S. workers against wage suppression and adverse working conditions may have the potential to be misused and may adversely affect the interest of the U.S. worker. For instance, even though the hiring of overqualified international workers may be in compliance with the law, it still does have the potential to suppress wages in the long run. As for the international worker, any immigration destination country or home country that can offer long term career and personal advancement, as well as an opportunity to be with family, will likely be attractive. In view of the above, any corrective measure that is undertaken should focus on these two aspects: (1) leveling the playing field between the U.S. workers and international workers by tightening the protectionist measures against wage suppression and adverse working conditions, and (2) liberalizing the quantitative limitation. These would have the effect of ensuring optimal protection for the U.S. workers and the international workers, as well as improving the competitiveness in attracting and retaining highly skilled workers to meet the needs of the domestic industry.

"Do Migrants Improve Their Hometowns? Remittances and Access to Public Services in Mexico, 1995-2000" Comparative Political Studies, Vol. 20, No. 10, September 2010 CLAIRE L. ADIDA, University of California, San Diego (UCSD).  DESHA GIROD, Georgetown University.  ABSTRACT:  How do citizens in developing countries access public services? Scholars study this question by emphasizing the role of government, measuring government performance as household access to public services, such as clean water and sanitation. however, the authors argue that the state does not hold a monopoly on provision of such utilities: citizens in developing countries often turn to nonstate providers of basic utilities. In Mexico, the authors find that direct money transfers from migrants, known as remittances, are used to provide household access to public services. The statistical analysis across Mexico's 2,438 municipalities demonstrates that citizens improve their own access. The results also contribute new evidence to the literature on remittances and development by offering a micro-level explanation for how remittances affect both the availability and the source of basic utilities. The findings suggest that the measures scholars typically associate with government performance may in fact capture nonstate provision of basic utilities.

 "Canada: Managing Diversity and Social Cohesion under Bill C-50 and Beyond" Managing Diversity and Social Cohesion: the Canadian Experience: Proceedings of the 5th International Conference of Central European Canadianists, Sofia, October 16-18, 2009, pp. 377-386, Brno: Masaryk University, 2010 HRISTINA PETROVA, Independent Researcher in Highly Skilled Immigration.  ABSTRACT:  The recent changes in the Canadian immigration system have led to the development of other programs designed to attract highly skilled immigrants. Bill C-50 was implemented in order to reduce the immigration backlog and match supply with demand on the labour market. Whatever the scheme, there’s one particular group of immigrants whose entry into the country has been encouraged via numerous parallel initiatives – the one of international students. Their retention is strategic because they could be just what Canada needs – young people proficient in the official languages, with Canadian credentials and work experience.


February 8, 2011 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)