Saturday, August 11, 2012
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has tapped Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan to be his running mate. Ryan toes the standard Republican Party line on immigration today -- more enforcement, no "amnesty" for any undocumented immigrants, no DREAM Act, and a guest worker program to benefit employers.
Here are some snippets from Ryan's congressional website:
"The vast majority of Americans agree that our immigration system is broken. . . . This issue [of undocumented immigration] persists as a result of our flawed immigration and border security system, is an affront to the rule of law, an unacceptable security risk, and an added burden to the current state of the economy. There are deeply held views on all sides of this issue, and rightly so. We are a nation of immigrants, and the vast majority of Americans agree that comprehensive immigration reform is long overdue. Far too many illegal immigrants continue to arrive in the United States, and those attempting to come to the country legally find themselves wrapped in endless paperwork and bureaucracy as a result. This broken immigration system does a disservice to those who play by the rules, rewards those who break them, and fails children who all-too-often fall between the cracks. Regardless of where you stand on the issue, it is clear that our current immigration system is not working.
However, I do not support amnesty for the millions of illegal immigrants already living in the United States. Any reform proposal must require that those who have disregarded the rule of law are not rewarded for their actions. In the end, I hope that with better border security and a more robust and up-to-date employee verification system, we will be able to stem the flow of illegal immigration and restore the rule of law.
The Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, H.R. 1842 in the 112th Congress, has been introduced several times in recent years. . . . While the DREAM Act has been promoted as an alternative to comprehensive reform, and I understand the points that DREAM Act supporters have raised, I believe this legislation attempts to treat a symptom – rather than the root cause – of our current problems. We must first secure the border and stem the flow of illegal immigration, and then work to increase legal immigration through an enforceable guest worker program and by developing a more secure employee verification system. I believe it would be a serious mistake to pursue piecemeal reforms like the DREAM Act without first putting in place these fundamental components of immigration reform.
I believe that any reforms to immigration policies should include expanding access to visas for seasonal and temporary labor. . . . Additionally, I believe a temporary guest worker program is one component of reform that could help us secure our borders and gain greater control of immigration. By providing a way to legally link employers with immigrant workers, we would relieve pressure on the borders from people who are coming here to seek work. This would allow us more time to pursue the people who mean to do us harm—criminals, terrorists, and drug smugglers.
. . . . New legislation addressing immigration policies should require illegal immigrants seeking a green card or citizenship to leave the United States and reapply for citizenship outside of the U.S., so that they can then re-enter the country legally, thus upholding the rule of law. Proposals like the “Z visa,” which would have allowed an illegal immigrant to stay in America indefinitely through continual renewals, are not an effective way of dealing with the problem. . . .
Although it does not appear likely that a comprehensive immigration bill will be taken up this year, I will continue to advocate for common sense reforms to our broken system. I believe that any immigration reform bill passed by Congress must first include strong border security provisions, an enforceable guest worker program, a secure employee verification system, and a system that does not reward illegal behavior, but provides equitable treatment for all immigrants. . . ."
Ryan generated controversy at a town hall meeting in 2011 (and here) in saying that "anchor babies cost money."
During the Republican primaries, Romney and Ryan spoke together on immigration.
Romney offers his standard immigration position ("I favor legal immigration and oppose illegal immigration") while Ryan generally agrees. Interestingly, in his few moments speaking, Ryan focus on the problem of identity theft and its relationship to illegal immigration.
ImmigrationProf previously posted about the “stateless” South Sudanese marathoner Guor Marial, who is competing under the Olympic flag in the Olympic marathon on Sunday. Yesterday, I learned that Marial's friend and advocate is Brad Poore, a UC Davis School of Law alum, lawyer, and elite runner in his own right. Poore advocated for Marial to compete in the Olympics as an independent athlete.
I remember Brad as a sincere law student and always was impressed with his dedication to law and the sport of running.
UPDATE (AUG. 12): Marial finished 47th in the Marathon with a time of 2:19:32.
Friday, August 10, 2012
Check out Immigrant Nation! We all have an immigration story, whether it’s passed down from our grandparents or experienced first-hand. Immigrant Nation is a new platform to connect our stories in an interactive way: you can tell your story, share it with your family and friends, and watch powerful short documentaries about immigration experiences. The Immigrant Nation team will build an online storytelling platform, as well as creating a series of eight dynamic short films.
My views from Huffington Post:
On Sunday, Wade Michael Page, a 40-year-old, white supremacist with a military background killed six people at a Sikh temple south of Milwaukee and critically wounded three others. He has been described as a "frustrated neo-Nazi who had been the leader of a racist white-power band." His most recent skinhead "hate rock band" was called "End Apathy." Clearly, part of his hate was directed at Sikhs, Muslims, or both. Somewhere along his life road, he felt licensed to express his hate note just through music, but through violence. This hatred unfortunately is reminiscent of a brand of vigilante racism and de-Americanization that we have seen far too often since 9/11.
Within hours of the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Americans of Muslim, Middle Eastern, Arab, and South Asian descent found themselves targeted for acts of hate and racial profiling. In a suburb of Chicago, and like a twisted scene out of the Olympics, three hundred protestors, many waving American flags and chanting "USA! USA!" marched on a mosque. One 19-year-old demonstrator exclaimed, "I'm proud to be American and I hate Arabs and I always have." In Huntington, New York, a 75-year-old man tried to run over a Pakistani woman in the parking lot of a shopping mall. He then followed the woman into a store and threatened to kill her for "destroying my country." In San Diego, a Sikh woman was attacked by a knife-wielding man shouting, "This is what you get for what you've done to us." A Sikh family was followed out of a restaurant by two white men who screamed at the family, "Go back to your country." By late 2001, hundreds of "suspicious individuals", mostly Arab Americans, were detained, without access to family or counsel. By November, the Department of Justice developed a list of 5,000 Middle Eastern men, between the ages of 18 and 33, who were to be "voluntarily" interviewed.
The fact that hateful acts and words of private citizens are followed up with official regimes of detention and profiling only reaffirms the subordination of the victims through suspicion of loyalty. The governmental imprimatur helps to marginalize the victims in U.S. society. In turn, the government's actions are interpreted by misguided, private individuals as license to vilify and to de-Americanize the same targets.
The de-Americanization message is one of exclusion: "You Muslims, Middle Easterners, and South Asians are not true Americans." Certainly, the process involves racism, but unlike the racism directed at African Americans, with its foundations in the historically held beliefs of inferiority, de-Americanizers base their assault on loyalty and permanent foreignness. In the minds of the private actors, who are nothing more than lawless vigilantes, self-appointed enforcers of their notion of true Americanism, their victims are immigrants or foreigners, even though they may in fact be citizens by birth or through naturalization. Irrespective of the victim community's possible longstanding status in the country, its members are regarded as perpetual foreigners. The victim community is forever regarded as immigrant America by these vigilante racists, as opposed to simply part of America and its diversity.
What has been happening to Muslims, Arabs, Middle Easterners, and South Asians in the United States since 9/11 is a process of ostracism from the American community that we have witnessed before. The process often involves two aspects: (1) the actions of private individuals; and (2) official government-sanctioned actions. On the private side, the process involves identifying the victims as foreigners, sometimes mistakenly, or other times simply treating the person as a foreigner despite knowing otherwise. De-Americanization is a twisted brand of xenophobia that is not simply hatred of foreigners, but also hatred of those who, in fact, may not be foreigners, but whom the vigilantes would prefer being removed from the country anyway.
The Southern Poverty Law Center recently reported the highest number of hate groups ever recorded in U.S. history, with nearly 1,018 active groups. Anti-Muslim hate groups have increased 300 percent in the last year, and the FBI reported a 50 percent increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes.
Sadly, the de-Americanization process is capable of reinventing itself generation after generation. We have seen this exclusionary process aimed at those of Jewish, Asian, Mexican, Haitian, and other descent throughout the nation's history. Once we acknowledge that more than a fear of foreigners is at work, we understand that this is a brand of nativism cloaked in a Euro-centric sense of America that combines hate and racial profiling. Whenever we go through a period of de-Americanization, like what we have witnessed since 9/11 directed at South Asians, Arabs, and Muslim Americans, as well as record-setting detention and deportations under the Obama administration, a whole new generation of Americans concludes that exclusion and hate is acceptable; that the definition of who is an American can be narrowed; that they too have license to profile. Their license is issued when others around them engage in hate and the government chimes in with its own profiling. This is part of the sad cycle of unconscious and institutionalized racism that haunts our country.
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by nearly 3,000 Filipino workers claiming injury from pesticide exposure while worked for Dole Food Co. the plaintiffs said they were exposed to the pesticides at banana plantations more than 30 years ago. The food company says an identical lawsuit filed 13 years ago in the Philippines was dismissed by that country's supreme court. The pesticides have since been banned by the Environmental Protection Agency, and classified as a probable human carcinogen. Read more....
From the Brookings Institution:
Live Webinar: Immigrant Workers in the U.S. Labor Force
Monday, August 13, 2012, 10:00 — 10:45 am
Immigration reform remains one of the country’s most protracted and politically charged policy debates. Policy discussions involving illegal immigration, border security, workforce skills, unemployment, job growth and competition, and entrepreneurship are often shaped as much by politics and emotion as by facts.
To better frame the debate surrounding immigration reform, Brookings scholars Darrell West and Audrey Singer will present findings from recent research on immigrant labor force trends during the recession, a time of a decreased rate of immigration, high unemployment and slow job growth. Their research examines basic trends in the immigrant labor force and how these workers fit into specific industries and occupations of interest. This discussion will explore questions such as: How large is the share of immigrants in the labor force and how does that vary by particular industry? How do immigrants compare to native-born workers in their educational attainment and occupational profiles?
There will be PowerPoint presentations to accompany each scholar’s remarks.
Vice President and Director, Governance Studies
Director, Center for Technology Innovation
The Brookings Institution
Senior Fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program
The Brookings Institution
To register for this meeting go here.
On the White Hose blog, Cecelia Munoz, Director of the Domestic Policy Council, has posted commentary about a new report released by the Obama administration, An America Built to Last: PRESIDENT OBAMA’S AGENDA AND THE HISPANIC COMMUNITY. Although the report says many of the right things about immigration enforcement priorioties and the need for reform, the administration has a mixed record during the first term. I must say, however, that it does not seem likely that a Romney adminstration would be any better and is likely to be more enforcement oriented.
As the world knows, the London Olympics have been in the news. Dozens of foreign-born athletes who immigrated to the United States have represented Team USA. Here are some of the top Americans who came from other lands:
Lopez Lomong, the Sudan 'Lost Boy'. One of the "Lost Boys" of Sudan, he came to the United States at the age of 16, fleeing civil war and life in a refugee camp. Event -- 5,000-meter run. Lomong qualified for the 5000 meter finals.
Danell Leyva, Gymnast Whose Family Fled Cuba. Leyva's mother brought him to Miami from Cuba as an infant in 1993. His stepfather and coach, Yin Alvarez, defected from Cuba by swimming across the Rio Grande River into the United States while the Cuban national team was competing in Mexico.
Foluke Akinradewo, Volleyball Player. Akinradewo, U.S. middle blocker, was born in London, Ontario, Canada in 1987 and is a citizen of three countries: Canada, Nigeria and the U.S.
Photo Courtesy of Leo Manzano.com
Leo Manzano, Son of an Undocumented Migrant Worker. Born in Mexico, Leo Manzano moved with his family to Texas at the age of 4 where he soon began running. His father had supported the family as a migrant worker, frequently crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally to find jobs. Leo became a U.S. citizen in 2004. Manzano won a silver medal in a thrilling 1500 meter final.
Liezel Huber, Tennis. At age 15, Liezel Huber moved to the United States from South Africa to attend the Van Der Meer Tennis Academy in Hilton Head, S.C. She has lived in the United States since 1992. She married Tony Huber, an U.S. citizen, in February 2000 and became a U.S. citizen.
Bernard Lagat, Distance Runner. Growing up on the family farm in Kapsabet, Kenya, Bernard Lagat would run 1.5 miles to school in the morning and then run home in the afternoon. Lagat, 37, has lived in the United States since 1996 and graduated from Washington State University. He became a U.S. citizen and started competing for the United States.
Mariya Koroleva, Synchronized Swimmer From Russia. Born in Yaroslavl, Russia in 1990, Mariya Koroleva grew up in Concord, California, after the family immigrated to the United States.
For more about immigrant athletes on Team USA, click here.
Thursday, August 9, 2012
New ABA President Pledges to Address Human Trafficking, House of Delegates Approves Immigrant Detention Standards
New ABA President Laurel Bellows during the association’s Annual Meeting in Chicago announced that, during her presidency, she will focus on issues that she said will make the ABA stronger and more relevant to lawyers, the nation and the global community, including ending human trafficking.
Approximately 100,000 U.S. citizens are victims of human trafficking in this country, and thousands more men, women and children are illegally trafficked into the United States each year. To deal with this issue, Bellows has established a Task Force on Human Trafficking in the United States, which will combat the sex and labor trafficking of adults and children in this nation. “The ABA will harness its considerable expertise to work to end the shameful horror of human trafficking in the United States,” Bellows stated. “We will mobilize the legal profession to pursue justice for victims of the modern-day slave trade and to launch a national public awareness campaign about this pervasive problem.”
Also, at the ABA annual meeting, the House of Delegates approved Resolution 102, which adopts the ABA Civil Immigration Detention Standards, which provide the Department of Homeland Security with a blueprint for developing civil detention standards and are designed to help DHS and Immigration and Customs Enforcement reform the U.S. immigration detention system.
Former Undocumented Immigrant Leo Manzano Wins Silver Medal for U.S.
On Tuesday, Mexican-born American runner Leo Manzano won a silver medal in the men’s 1,500-meter final, running the fastest time ever by a U.S. athlete at the Games. Manzano, 27, entered the U.S. at the age of 4 without papers, according to LetsRun. He didn’t gain legal residency until 10 years later.
To read more about his insping story read the following link http://www.kxan.com/dpp/sports/leo-manzano-wins-silver-in-1500 EQ
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
The New Jersey Appellate Division today ruled today in favor of a young American citizen denied state financial aid last year based on the immigration status of her mother rather than her own residency. The court’s ruling stated the student, A.Z., was in fact eligible for a Tuition Aid Grant (TAG) from the state and that the state’s Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESSA) misapplied the law when it denied her application. The ACLU-NJ and the Rutgers Constitutional Litigation Clinic filed an appeal last year on behalf of A.Z., who was a high school senior when HESAA denied her TAG grant application because her “parents are not legal New Jersey residents.” “This is an important ruling for children of immigrants throughout New Jersey. For the purpose of state financial aid, American citizens cannot be punished for the immigration status of their parents." said Ronald K. Chen of Rutgers Law School-Newark's Constitutional Litigation Clinic, who argued the case on behalf of A.Z. “HESAA clearly misapplied the law and the court admonished the agency in response.”
Florida also has denied financial assistance to U.S. citizen children of undocumented parents.
From Fox News Latino:
The Florida Board of Bar Examiners says that an undocumented immigrant born in Mexico appears to qualify for a law license, but it still wants an advisory opinion from the state Supreme Court before making a final decision.
The board initially denied Jose Godinez-Samperio's admission to the bar but asked the justices to decide whether being an illegal immigrant disqualifies applicants. The new findings submitted to the Supreme Court on Monday are the result of a request by Godinez-Samperio to consider new information related to his character and fitness before the Supreme Court makes its decision.
Former Florida State University President Talbot "Sandy" D'Alemberte, now teaching law at the school, is representing his former student.
"I hope the bar examiners would just go ahead and approve his admission to the bar and just be done," D'Alemberte said Tuesday.
D'Alemberte, also a former American Bar Association president, said the board's findings that Godinez-Samperio had no moral character or fitness issues that would prevent his admission was more good news that could help the state Supreme Court rule in his favor. He said the justices could dismiss the board's request for an opinion.
President Barack Obama announced in June that his administration will let undocumented immigrants remain in the United States if they are no older than 30, arrived as children, have no criminal history and graduated from high school or served in the military.
D'Alemberte filed a motion with the justices last month arguing that makes Godinez-Samperio eligible for legal immigration status and work authorization. Read more...
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
From Wajahat Ali:
Here are some of the things we know about Wade Michael Page: He led a “racist white power trio” called End Apathy; he had a tattoo commemorating 9/11; he shaved his head; and, on Sunday, he killed six individuals and wounded a police officer at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.
We have yet to determine if Page mistook Sikhs for Muslims, but such questions are irrelevant. In today’s Islamophobic atmosphere, there has been increased marginalization of all AMEMSA (Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, South Asian) communities. In particular, Sikh Americans have faced the brunt of post-9/11 hate crimes and backlash, with Sikh men often being mistaken for Muslims. The first post-9/11 hate crime murder was of Balbir Singh Sodhi, a Sikh gas station owner in Arizona, whom the murderer chose because he was “dark-skinned, bearded and wore a turban.”
This extremist violence and fear-mongering does not exist in a vacuum. The Southern Poverty Law Center recently reported the highest number of hate groups ever recorded in U.S. history, with nearly 1,018 active groups. Furthermore, anti-Muslim hate groups have increased 300 percent in the last year, and the FBI reported a 50 percent increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes. The reasons for the record rise in hate groups are due to the faltering economy, changing racial dynamics in America leading to a minority-majority country, and the election of Barack Hussein Obama.
However, the reality according to the latest studies is that American Muslims help law enforcement and are more likely to reject violence than any other U.S. religious community, and nearly all American Muslims have no sympathy or loyalty for al-Qaida.
Yet facts and evidence do not detract a paranoid fringe from indicting American Muslims or anyone who looks “Muslim-y,” including Arab American Christians, Iranian Jews and Sikh Americans.
On Aug. 6, a second fire in less than five weeks burned down a mosque in Joplin, Mo., most likely a result of a hate crime. Furthermore, a committed anti-Muslim contingency in Murfreesboro, Tenn., continues to impede the progress of a mosque construction belonging to an American Muslim community that has peacefully lived there for over three decades.
Despite President Obama publicly proclaiming Jesus Christ as his savior, attending church, and celebrating Easter, nearly 17 percent of registered American voters still think our president worships Allah. Obama’s alleged “Muslimy-ness” continues to act as a smear, handcuffing “Muslim” to something deemed “foreign,” “hostile” and “anti-American.” Furthermore, Islam currently has its lowest favorability rating in America, even lower than the weeks following 9/11. Read more....
Margaret Stock, moderator of the panel titled “Immigration, Race and Incarceration in the United States,” explained that the rising levels of incarceration of Hispanics are mainly due to an increase in immigration enforcement. Investigative journalist Maria Hinojosa presented clips from her documentary Lost in Detention, in which she revealed how the Obama administration’s immigration policy has contributed not only to higher levels of imprisonment, but also to the deportation of non-criminal immigrants and hidden abuse in detention centers. Sara Elizabeth Dill, an immigration and criminal attorney, shared her experience in representing immigrants and noted that the discrepancies between the immigration and criminal justice systems expose the flaws of a broken judicial system, because immigrants don’t have access to appropriate counsel. Lisa Marquardt, Maryland office of the public defender, called for the restoration of judicial recommendations against deportation. JRAD was part of the Immigration Nationality Act on 1952 that allowed a judge in a criminal case the discretionary authority to prevent deportation of a noncitizen.
The Migration Policy Institue has released a report entitled Understanding ‘Canadian Exceptionalism’ in Immigration and Pluralism Policy that offers fascinating insights about Canadian immigration and integration policy. Here is the Executive Summary:
Despite having a much greater proportion of immigrants inn its population than other Western countries, Canada is far more open to, and optimistic about, immigration than its counterparts in Europe and the United States. According to a 2010 survey, about two-thirds of Canadians feel that immigration is a key positive feature of their country. Indeed, those Canadians who most strongly identify themselves as patriotic are also the most supportive of immigration and multiculturalism. A frequently cited reason for this Canadian exceptionalism is the fact that a majority of Canada’s immigrants are selected through a points system that admits people with skills that are thought to contribute to the economy. This, coupled with the fact that Canada’s geography makes it difficult for unauthorized immigrants to enter, helps alleviate the concerns often expressed in other countries about illegal entry or immigrants becoming a drain on the welfare state.
Economic selection and geography alone do not explain Canada’s unique experience, however. The Canadian view of immigration as nation building, backed by supportive institutions and policies, is critical. Canada has reinvented its national identity away from that of a British colony or a shadow of the United States to one that embraces immigration, diversity, and tolerance. This national ethos is supported by government policies of multiculturalism, anti-discrimination laws, and settlement programs that promote integration through public-private partnerships. Such initiatives are mostly about helping migrants find jobs and integrate into society, not about instilling a set of cultural norms and values. While many Canadians express a strong desire that immigrants integrate into society, their support for multiculturalism implies a broader understanding of immigrant integration than that found in the United States and Europe.
Although immigrants in Canada express stronger ethnic identities than those in the United States, they also express a stronger affiliation with their host country. Canada’s focus on facilitating permanent, rather than temporary, migration has been crucial because it gives both immigrants and the receiving society a stake in promoting favorable long-term outcomes. The sizeable number of immigrant voters also provides a check on political parties that might seek to exploit anti-immigrant sentiment. The major political parties in Canada all court immigrants’ votes, and unlike many countries in Europe, there are no antiimmigrant parties on the fringes of the political mainstream receiving public support.
Nonetheless, as in other countries, new immigration flows prompt a certain disquiet, notably around religious accommodation. Incidents of unauthorized migrants seeking asylum get occasional media attention, stirring controversy. The recent move to increase temporary migration has also raised significant concerns. Temporary visas, if overstayed, open up the possibility of a larger population of unauthorized immigrants. Canadians are not especially sympathetic to unauthorized immigrants, and a rapid increase in this population could have a significant effect on public opinion on immigration.
Immigration Article of the Day: Citizenship Under Fire: The Forging of the New Americans by Shruti Rana
Citizenship Under Fire: The Forging of the New Americans by Shruti Rana (Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law) Tulsa Law Review, Vol. 47, 2012, p. 31
Abstract: This essay reviews and critiques two new books on the debate over immigration and citizenship, Anna O. Law, The Immigration Battle in American Courts, and Ediberto Roman, Citizenship and Its Exclusions: A Classical, Constitutional, and Critical Race Critique. Law’s book takes a procedural approach to unraveling the complex immigration cases emanating from the U.S. courts of appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. This essay challenges some of Law’s conclusions and suggests methodological alterations that may strengthen her key arguments. Roman’s book is distinct from Law’s in that it takes on a much broader historical and procedurialist view of the idea of citizenship. He explores the roots of the present day American citizenship construct through a personal and philosophical approach to exploring the citizenship construct as it exists in the U.S. today, incorporating significant historical influences. This essay commends Roman’s contribution to the study of immigration law and the concept of citizenship but also recognizes the eternal struggles in making meaningful and lasting progress in this area of law.
Monday, August 6, 2012
From CBS News:
The gunman who killed six people at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin before being shot to death by police was identified Monday as a 40-year-old Army veteran and former leader of a white supremacist heavy metal band.
Wade Michael Page strode into the temple carrying a 9mm handgun and multiple magazines of ammunition and opened fire without saying a word, authorities said.
Page joined the Army in 1992 and was discharged in 1998, according to a defense official who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because he was not yet authorized to release the information.
When the shooting at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in suburban Milwaukee ended, six victims ranging in age from 39 to 84 years old lay dead. Three others were critically wounded.
Page was a "frustrated neo-Nazi" who led a racist white supremacist band, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the nonprofit civil rights organization in Montgomery, Ala., said Page had been on the white-power music scene for more than a decade, playing in bands known as Definite Hate and End Apathy.
"The name of the band seems to reflect what he went out and actually did," Potok said.
"There is a whole underworld of white supremacists music that is rarely seen or heard by the public," Potok said, describing lyrics that talk about carrying out genocide against Jews and other minorities, he said.
Potok said there's no research showing white supremacists hating Sikhs, suggesting Sunday's attack could have been an example of someone mistaking Sikhs for another group, such as Muslims.
In a 2010 interview, Page told a white supremacist website that he became active in white-power music in 2000, when he left his native Colorado and started the band End Apathy in 2005. Read more....
From the Immigrant Legal Resource Center:
The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) is seeking a full-time staff attorney to further our technical support and capacity building work on behalf of immigrants and the practitioners who defend their rights. The ILRC is a national nonprofit legal support center located in San Francisco, California. Founded in 1979, we specialize in immigration law, policy, and immigrants' rights. The ILRC’s work concentrates on three main program areas: (1) building the capacity of attorneys, paralegals, organizers, service providers, immigrants, and others by providing legal technical assistance, trainings, and publications; (2) assisting immigrants with civic engagement projects to help expand immigrants’ rights and political power; and (3) conducting policy and advocacy work related to immigration law and immigrant rights.
The ILRC is a team-based organization that makes most of its decisions in a collaborative fashion that allows for significant staff input.
Job Responsibilities: The staff attorney will be responsible for contributing to several concurrent programs including:
· Responding to legal technical requests from public defenders, private practice attorneys, nonprofit agency staff, and pro bono attorneys who work with low-income immigrants on issues relating to family-based immigration, removal and deportation defense, VAWA, asylum, and other immigration law issues;
· Writing manuals, practitioner advisories, and outreach and educational materials for attorneys, paralegals, community organizers, members of the immigrant community, and others;
· Working with networks of other immigrant rights organizations and/or organizing with and presenting to groups on immigration law, policy and immigrant rights issues;
· Engaging in policy and advocacy work on immigration law issues;
· Writing grant proposals and reports to foundations and corporations, and representing the ILRC in meetings with funders and supporters; and
· Traveling for trainings, funder visits, and other events in California and throughout the United States.
· Helping immigrants lead and participate in civic engagement projects.
Qualifications: The successful applicant is required to have:
· A minimum of five – seven years of experience representing clients in the practice of general immigration law before the BIA and the federal courts, especially in regards to more complicated family-based and removal cases;
· Broad knowledge of family-based immigration law and removal cases including the grounds of inadmissibility and deportability; the intersection of criminal and immigration law and the rules governing BIA and judicial review;
· Excellent writing, editing, legal analysis, and oral presentation skills;
· Exceptional time management skills and the ability to meet deadlines;
· A strong work ethic, including the following qualities: organized, flexible, reliable, and dependable, with the ability to be an independent worker, and able to handle several projects simultaneously while thriving in a team-based collaborative decision-making environment;
· A willingness to travel throughout California and the United States; and
· A current Bar membership in good standing for any state in the United States or the District of Columbia.
It is a plus if the applicant has additional experience including:
· More than seven years of experience representing low-income clients in the practice of general immigration law, especially family-based and removal cases, including experience representing clients before the BIA and the federal courts;
· Writing and securing grants from foundations and corporations;
· Technical writing whether for immigration or other purposes;
· Training, teaching, or other public speaking experience;
· Working in, leading, or forming coalitions;
· Collaborating with immigrant communities;
· Coordinating civic engagement projects or working as a community organizer:
· Second language proficiency, preferably Spanish, Mandarin or Cantonese, within the range of conversational to fluent; and/or
· Business marketing and/or public relations experience utilizing both traditional and social media communication, such as preparation of media materials and website content, outreach to and interaction with media outlets, writing/sending press releases, prepping interview talking points, writing blog posts, articles or letters to the editor.
Salary/Benefits: Pay is commensurate with experience. The ILRC provides competitive salaries, excellent benefits including professional membership dues, health/dental/vision insurance, a flexible spending account for medical and dependent care, vacation, and sick leave. The ILRC sponsors a retirement plan option upon fulfillment of eligibility.
Applications: This position will remain open until it is filled. We will consider applications on an ongoing basis beginning immediately. To ensure consideration of your application, please submit a cover letter explaining your qualifications for the position and salary requirement, a resume, two writing samples – one sample that demonstrates immigration law knowledge and a second sample that shows business writing acumen -- and the names of three references as soon as possible to:
Staff Attorney Hiring Committee
1663 Mission Street, Suite 602
San Francisco, CA 94103
Fax: (415)255-9792 (no calls, please)
From National Conference of state Legislatures:
State Legislatures Enact 206 Immigration Related Bills and Resolutions in First Half of 2012 - Down 20% From Same Period Last Year
Law Enforcement and Identification/Drivers Licenses Remain Top Issues
CHICAGO – Lawmakers in 41 states enacted 114 bills and adopted 92 resolutions dealing with immigration in the first half of 2012. The immigration activity is detailed in a new report from the National Conference of State Legislatures’ (NCSL) Immigrant Policy Project released Monday at the NCSL Legislative Summit.
This marks a decrease of 20 percent from the 257 laws and resolutions enacted in the first half of 2011. Law enforcement and identification/driver’s licenses remained the leading issues addressed by state legislatures, comprising 18 percent and 11 percent respectively, of all enacted laws on immigration.
“States took a bit of a pause on the issue of immigration as they waited for the Supreme Court to rule," said Senator John Watkins of Virginia, Co-Chair of the NCSL Immigration and the States Task Force. "The ruling we got is a yellow light, in that states can move forward in some areas, but not in others.”
“On the issue of immigration, the outcome in November really doesn’t matter. Whoever is elected president will need to work with both parties in Congress and address this issue," said Representative Sharon Tomiko Santos of Washington, Co-Chair of the NCSL Immigration and the States Task Force. "The can has been kicked down the road for too long, and states have suffered as a result. Come January, action at the federal level needs to happen.”
Multiple reasons exist for the decline in immigration-related legislation. Budget gaps and redistricting maps took priority, consuming the bulk of legislative agendas. Perhaps more significant, state lawmakers cited pending litigation on states’ authority to enforce immigration laws, such as the Arizona v. United States decision handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court in June, as further reason to postpone action.
As the nation awaited the Arizona v. United States ruling, state omnibus immigration legislation slowed significantly. Unlike 2011, when 30 state legislatures introduced more than 50 omnibus bills similar to Arizona’s, only five states – Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, Rhode Island and West Virginia – did so this year, and none were enacted. Alabama was the only state to act on an omnibus bill in 2012, amending its 2011 law.
Among the immigration bills passed, E-Verify, the federal work authorization system, was of particular interest. Six states enacted legislation addressing employers’ use of E-Verify, raising the total number of states with E-Verify requirements to 19.
Lawmakers in 46 states and the District of Columbia introduced 948 bills and resolutions related to immigrants and refugees during the first half of 2012, a 40 percent drop from the peak of 1,592 in the first half of 2011. Legislatures in Montana, Nevada, North Dakota and Texas did not meet in regular session in 2012.
For more information on NCSL's Immigration Report, please contact the press room.
In the fall of 2010, the Board of Regents banned undocumented students from Georgia’s top five research universities. In defiance of that ban, a group of students, faculty, and volunteers opened Freedom University Georgia in the fall of 2011. FU is open to all students regardless of their immigration status or ability to pay. Freedom University invites you will take a moment to visit the website and sign the petition against the Regents' ban and make a monetary donation or buy a book or two to support our ongoing work. Freedom University depends entirely upon your generosity.