Saturday, October 6, 2012

Deportation Defense Seminars

From the Immigrant Legal Resource Center:

Introduction to Deportation Defense: The Basics
Are you a lawyer who wants to learn more about representing clients in removal proceedings? Do you want to represent your clients with the confidence that comes from a better understanding of the Immigration Court practices and procedures? This seminar will teach you the nuts and bolts of representing persons in removal proceedings, and provide you with the skills to present a successful case before the Immigration Court. Topics covered:
Chronology of removal proceedings: Master calendar and individual hearings
How to respond to a Notice to Appear (NTA), including challenges to proper service
Overview of the bond process for detained clients
Overview of Relief Available in Immigration Court and what you need to file
Voluntary Departure, what you should know before you request it
Filing Motions to Communicate with the Court
Other relevant issues including fingerprinting, local operating rules and how to find them, filing applications in court
Location: Golden Gate University, 536 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
Presenters: Angie Junck, ILRC Supervising Attorney, Erin Quinn, ILRC Staff Attorney, and Raha Jorjani, Staff Attorney and Lecturer - UC Davis School of Law Immigration Law Clinic
Date:        Friday, November 16
Time:       9:00 am - 12:00 pm
MCLE:      2.75 CA

Deadline: Register by 11/7/12
Register Now
Advanced Deportation Defense
Have you been practicing removal defense, but want to hone your defense skills for immigration court? Do you want to think more strategically for you clients? For those that have the basic procedure down, this afternoon session will focus on complex issues in representing detained clients and evidentiary issues. Gain confidence in contesting removability, mandatory detention, and file that motion to suppress! Topics covered:
Things you need to know if the person is detained, including bond pre-NTA & post-NTA filing, and who is properly subject to mandatory detention
Categorical Approach and contesting criminal charges of removability -- is the I-213 sufficient evidence for the government?
Motions to Terminate
Motions to Suppress Evidence in Immigration Court
Preparing your client when there are criminal evidentiary issues
Location: Golden Gate University, 536 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
Presenters: Angie Junck, ILRC Supervising Attorney, Erin Quinn, ILRC Staff Attorney, and Raha Jorjani, Staff Attorney and Lecturer - UC Davis School of Law Immigration Law Clinic
Date:        Friday, November 16
Time:       1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
MCLE:      2.75 CA

Deadline: Register by 11/7/12
Register Now


October 6, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

New Voting Litigation Addresses Increasing Disenfranchisement of Naturalized U.S. Citizens - The Battle Against Voter ID - Poll Tax of the 21st Century

Joanna Cuevas Ingram, Equal Justice Works Voting Rights Fellow at the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area,writes:

 As continued voter suppression in the form of state "Voter ID" laws are struck down by federal courts in regards to jurisdictions that come within the protections of Section 5 of the Federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, such as Texas, and in Pennsylvania under state constitutional provisions, extra voting requirements for naturalized citizens under the guise of "Voter ID" laws may actually disenfranchise U.S. citizens who are eligible to vote. As NBC News Reports on the recent Advancement Project study, new laws in 17 states that require voters show proof of citizenship and photo identification at the polls -- along with recent voter roll purges or plans to adopt citizenship related voter roll purges in 16 states (Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Washington) could have a dangerously discriminatory effect and, as ABC News and Univision report, the combined effect of these new requirements may deter 10 million Latina/o voters across the country from exercising their right to vote on November 6.

As Kevin Johnson posted earlier this week, the Immigration Policy Center released, Chicken Little in the Voting Booth: The Non-Existent Problem of Non-Citizen Voter Fraud, which notes that Florida, Colorado, and New Mexico embarked upon ultimately fruitless “purges” of their voter rolls for the ostensible purpose of sweeping away anyone who might be a non-U.S. citizen. The update observes that "Proponents of harsh voter laws often assert, without a shred of hard evidence, that hordes of immigrants are swaying election results by wheedling their way into the voting booth. However, repeated investigations over the years have found no indication that systematic vote fraud by non-citizens is anything other than the product of overactive imaginations." Craig Newmark of Craigslist notes in his infographic that many of these laws claim to solve a major issue when where there were only 9 possible reported instances of voter impersonation or fraud between 2002 and 2007.

Darrel Rowland of the Columbus Dispatch reports that the American Civil Liberties Union, Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights under Law, and Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law have brought suit on behalf of Ohio plaintiffs against the Secretary of State in Ohio to repeal such a law that amounts to clear voter suppression, a law that remains on the books, although it was declared unconstitutional over six years ago in 2006 by a federal court. Federal Judge Christopher A. Boyko found in 2006 that there “is a very real possibility of ‘profiling’ voters by poll workers or election judges exercising an unfettered ability to challenge on the basis of appearance, name, looks, accent or manner.” Rowland writes:

"The statute would allow Ohio poll workers to ask voters if they are naturalized citizens. If the answer is yes, the voter would be forced to cast a provisional ballot if he or she couldn’t immediately produce their naturalization papers. If the voter didn’t provide the papers to the elections board within 10 days, his or her ballot would be discarded."

The motion brought by the three civil rights organizations states: “As it now stands, any person in Ohio, including voters, poll workers, or organizational poll monitors might reference (the old law) and rely on this unconstitutional law on Election Day. Recurring directives and placing of required signage would ensure that both voters and elections officials are fully aware of the fact that although (the old law) remains ‘on the books,’ it is unconstitutional and unenforceable."

See the full news article here.

For more information about the relationship between Voter ID laws and eligibility to vote, or if you or your colleagues are concerned about ensuring all eligible voters can exercise their right to vote on election day, please visit and sign up to volunteer for Election Protection in your community with the Election Protection Coalition.


October 6, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Law Student DREAMer Prevails


George Washington law school Dean Paul Berman relays the story of a a law student, Prerna Lal, a DREAMer who risked deportation to fight for lawful immigration status.  


October 6, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Conference on Building Global Professionalism: Emerging Trends in International and Transnational Legal Education


On Friday, October 12, the Drexel Law Review and the Drexel International Law and Human Rights Society will be hosting a one day symposium on "Building Global Professionalism: Emerging Trends in International and Transnational Legal Education." The symposium will be held at the Drexel University Earle Mack School of Law, 3320 Market Street, Philadelphia. To register to attend, please click here.

A live video stream of the symposium will be available here. If you feel inspired to join the conversation during the event on Twitter, please use the hashtag #ILSDrexel.

Papers from the symposium will be published in the Spring 2013 issue of the Drexel Law Review.


October 6, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

CRS Report: Noncitizen Eligibility for Federal Public Assistance: Policy Overview and Trends

The Congfressional Research Service report by Ruth Ellen Wasem entitled "Noncitizen Eligibility for Federal Public Assistance: Policy Overview and Trends" outlines in broad terms some of the issues surrounding some of the complex issues surrouning public benefit receipt by immigrants.


October 6, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Hispanic America’s Turn


According to the 2010 census, the number of American Hispanics grew 43% in the last decade to over 50 million. By 2050, Hispanics are projected to number 132 million and represent 30% of the population. As that population evolves, so does their political power. A new report by the Pew Hispanic Center shows that since 2008, America’s Latino voting population has grown 22% since 2008. But what are the cultural and political implications of these now well-understood statistics?

On this week’s Moyers & Company, Bill goes beyond the numbers with two of our nation’s most popular and influential journalists: Univision’s Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas.  In a candid and comprehensive discussion, Ramos and Salinas discuss their responsibilities both as reporters and representatives of their culture, their aggressive journalistic approaches to both President Obama and Governor Romney, and their strong takes on immigration issues that mean so much to a potentially-decisive voting bloc in 2012.


October 6, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Friday, October 5, 2012

Celebrate National Immigration Forum's 30th Anniversary

From the National Immigration Forum:

30 years!  The Forum celebrates its milestone anniversary as the lead non-profit advocacy organization promoting the value of immigrants and the importance of common-sense immigration policies in our country.  I hope you realize that it would not have been possible without the leadership, time and commitment of dedicated volunteers like you.  Thank you.
I am pleased to invite you to participate in our upcoming 30th year anniversary celebration at the Keepers of the American Dream event on Wednesday, December 5th at the Newseum in Washington D.C.
This year’s honorees are Susan Collins, Government Employee for the Honorable Luis V. Gutierrez; Hikmet Ersek, President and CEO of Western Union; Vartan Gregorian, Ph.D., President of the Carnegie Corporation of New York; Monica Lozano, CEO of impreMedia; and Richard Trumka, President of the AFL-CIO. They represent the best in the worlds of labor, foundations, business, government and media – all of our honorees have worked for the value of immigrants and promoted value based immigration policies throughout their careers.
Please join me, our current board, our staff and our honorees in celebrating our 30th anniversary. Our electronic invitation plus sponsorship form is included with this email, or you may also visit the Keepers of the American Dream website (
Thank you for your consideration and I hope to see you there.
Ali Noorani
Executive Director
National Immigration Forum


October 5, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Polling Asian American Voters

From Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund:

The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), a 38-year old national civil rights organization, announced that it will dispatch over 600 attorneys, law students, and community volunteers to 14 states to document voting problems in the November 6th elections. AALDEF will also conduct a nonpartisan multilingual exit poll in 12 languages to document Asian American voting preferences, in light of the surge in newly-registered voters and expected high turnout in this Presidential election.

 "We want to ensure that all eligible Asian Americans can participate in the electoral process and have their votes counted in this critical Presidential election," said Margaret Fung, AALDEF Executive Director.

AALDEF plans to poll 10,000 Asian American voters on Election Day in 14 states with large Asian American populations: New York, Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Illinois, Texas, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, California, and Washington, D.C. Read more....


October 5, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Did ICE Chief Morton Blackmail Jerry Brown on Trust Act?

Jonathan Perez writes in Huffington Post:

In order to stop the California TRUST Act which had gained widespread support, Immigration Customs Enforcement's Director John Morton went as far as to blackmail the Governor of California into vetoing the TRUST Act. When advocates asked the governors office why Brown vetoed the bill, the staff responded that they had received a call from John Morton Director of ICE saying that if Brown doesn't veto the TRUST Act that California would essentially go back to the old days in reference to immigration raids and more overt enforcement.

California would have been the first state in which the impact of "Secure Communities" would be significantly reduced by not honoring immigration detainers. California holds one of the largest undocumented immigrant population in the nation, and deports about 80,000 undocumented immigrants about one fourth of the yearly quota for deportations that the Department of homeland security set in 2010. John Morton could not allow for the TRUST Act to pass, with the Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals now being implemented the pool of deportable immigrants shrunk by almost a million. ICE needed to make sure they meet their 400,000 a year quota for deportations and so they intervened in state politics to ensure the survival of "Secure Communities." Read more...


October 4, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Los Angeles Police Chief Resists Secure Communities

In response to the unfair application of Secure Communites LAPD Chief takes a bold step.

Joel Rubin and Andrew Blankstein write for the Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck stepped into the national immigration debate Thursday, announcing that hundreds of undocumeted immigrants arrested by his officers each year in low-level crimes would no longer be turned over to federal authorities for deportation.

The new rules, which are expected to affect about 400 people arrested each year, mark a dramatic attempt by the nation's second-largest police department to distance itself from federal immigration policies that Beck says unfairly treat undocumented immigrants suspected of committing petty offenses.

It's the latest in a series of moves by Beck to redefine the Los Angeles Police Department's position on immigration issues. Earlier this year, the chief pushed through a controversial plan that limits the cases in which police officers impound vehicles of drivers operating without a license — a group consisting largely of undocumented immigrants. And he came out in favor of issuing driver's licenses to illegal immigrants. Read more....


October 4, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Romney Would End Deferred Action for DREAMers

From the Boston Globe:

Mitt Romney would not revoke temporary deportation exemptions granted to young undocumented immigrants under an executive action by President Obama, but he also would not issue new protective documents if elected.

“The people who have received the special visa that the president has put in place, which is a two-year visa, should expect that the visa would continue to be valid,” Romney told the Denver Post in an interview published Tuesday, a day ahead of the first presidential debate of the general election, which will be held in that city and cover domestic policy, possibly including immigration.

Technically, the undocumented immigrants Romney described have not received visas; their undocumented status has not changed, but they have been granted temporary reprieves from deportation.

Responding to a Globe request to clarify Romney’s statement to the Denver Post, Romney’s campaign said he would honor deportation exemptions issued by the Obama administration before his inauguration but would not grant new ones after taking office. Read more....


October 4, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

North Carolina Law Review Symposium: Race Trials


On Friday, October 5, 2012, the North Carolina Law Review will be hosting its thirteenth annual Symposium, Race Trials, at the Great Hall in Frank Porter Graham Student Union at the University of North Carolina.

The Race Trials symposium brings together academic leaders in the fields of legal history, race and ethnic studies, trial advocacy, ethics, and outsider jurisprudence (both Critical Race Theory and LatCrit Theory) to address the complex phenomenon of trials involving race, from historical and contemporary perspectives. The Symposium looks to the ways that race has affected the progress and outcome of both civil and criminal trials and how those trials have subsequently shaped lives, law, and culture. Trials appear as responses to, gauges and shapers of attitudes towards race. T

The Symposium also looks at how race continues to influence trials today, how race influences the fairness and outcome of trials, and what the near future holds as the United States moves towards a more diverse, multiracial society.

Our distinguished speakers are:

■  Alejandro de la Fuente, University of Pittsburgh;

■  Ariela Gross, University of Southern California;

■  Steven Lubet, Northwestern University;

■  Martha Jones, University of Michigan;

■  Anthony Alfieri, University of Miami;

■  Jack Chin, University of California Davis;

■  Richard Delgado, Seattle University;

■  Dean Kevin Johnson, University of California, Davis; and

■  Cynthia Lee, George Washington University


October 4, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Racial Profiling in North Carolina?

Indy Week reports from North Carolina that federal officials are dropping deportation cases in Alamance County after a U.S. Department of Justice investigation alleged that Sheriff Terry Johnson and his office racially profile Latinos. Durham attorney Marty Rosenbluth tolds the Indy that Immigration and Customs Enforcement lawyers voluntarily closed six of his pending deportation cases in the days after the DOJ investigation. Each of Rosenbluth's deportation cases involved a Latino's arrest on the charge of driving without a license. In many cases in Alamance, driving without a license is the only charge brought against Latinos, Rosenbluth says. DOJ noted those arrests indicate profiling, explaining that the charge is "an offense not observable from the road."


October 4, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigration Article of the Day: Discretionary (In)Justice: The Exercise of Discretion in Claims for Asylum by Kate Aschenbrenner


Discretionary (In)Justice: The Exercise of Discretion in Claims for Asylum by Kate Aschenbrenner Barry University School of Law 2012 University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform, Vol. 45, p. 595, Spring 2012 Abstract: Section 208(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides that asylum may be granted to an applicant who meets the definition of a refugee - that is, someone who has been persecuted or has a well-founded fear of future persecution in her own country on account of race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. Asylum is a discretionary form of relief, which means that the United States government is not required to grant asylum to every refugee within the United States but instead may decide whether or not to do so. This Article sets out in Part I the history and current application of discretion as an element of asylum adjudications, including several case studies to illustrate when and how adjudicators deny asylum in an exercise of discretion and the serious impact of those decisions. Part II then argues that the fact that asylum is discretionary is highly problematic. First, discretion is unnecessary to achieve the purported goals of such a policy, namely, screening individuals for their suitability to become permanent members of the United States community. Second, the fact that asylum is discretionary results in inadequate protection for those fleeing persecution. Finally, the meaning of the term "discretion" is so inherently vague and confused as to make its use inappropriate, at least in the asylum context. This Article concludes that asylum should be a mandatory, not a discretionary, form of immigration relief. An adjudicator's exercise of discretion in asylum claims should be eliminated, or at least substantially limited with an eye towards the problems discussed herein.


October 4, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Administration Should Keep DREAMers Healthy

From the National Immigration Law Center:

Despite progress made by the Obama administration to help improve the lives of low-income immigrants, its recent decision to exclude young, healthy individuals who are DREAMers from affordable health care is a huge step backwards.

Tell the administration it’s wrong to exclude immigrants from affordable health care! We need you to send a letter by October 29 to oppose the administration’s retrograde decision.


Take a stand against this harmful decision by sending written comments to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) before October 29. To get you started, we’re supplying model comments, which you or your organization can submit verbatim, or that you can modify to add your specific concerns about the consequences of this rule.

Just follow these four easy steps:

Step 1:  Share this email with your networks, friends, and neighbors, and ask them to send their own letters.

Step 2: Use the model comments as a model for the letter you draft. Borrow as much of their language and structure as you think is appropriate.

Step 3: Personalize the letter and add any information that you think would be helpful.

Step 4: Send your comments via U.S. mail or electronically (online) before the deadline — midnight EDT, October 29, 2012.
The mailing address to use is provided in the model comments.
To submit online, go to, search for the August 30 rule related to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), upload your letter, and submit.
For more information about the rule change, click here.

Thank you for helping in this effort!

Contact Alvaro Huerta, NILC Skadden Fellow, at for more information.


October 3, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Multiracial American Population Grew Faster Than Single-Race Segment In 2010 Census

From 2000 to 2010, the number of Americans who consider themselves multiracial grew faster than those who self-identify as a single race, with the largest gains coming in the once racially segregated South and among those who identify as both white and black, according to a new U.S. Census Bureau report. For further analysis, click here.


October 3, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Chicken Little in the Voting Booth: The Non-Existent Problem of Non-Citizen Voter Fraud

Today, the Immigration Policy Center released, Chicken Little in the Voting Booth: The Non-Existent Problem of Non-Citizen Voter Fraud. A wave of restrictive voting laws is sweeping the nation including “at least 180 restrictive bills introduced since the beginning of 2011 in 41 states” according to The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. Bills requiring voters “to show photo identification in order to vote” were signed into law in Alabama, Kansas, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. Alabama, Kansas, and Tennessee went a step further and required voters to present proof of U.S. citizenship in order to vote. In addition, Florida, Colorado, and New Mexico embarked upon ultimately fruitless “purges” of their voter rolls for the ostensible purpose of sweeping away anyone who might be a non-U.S. citizen.

All of these actions have been undertaken in the name of preventing voter fraud, particularly illegal voting by non-citizens. Proponents of harsh voter laws often assert, without a shred of hard evidence, that immigrants are swaying election results by wheedling their way into the voting booth. However, repeated investigations over the years have found no indication that systematic vote fraud by non-citizens is anything other than the product of overactive imaginations.


October 2, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Refugees and Asylees in the United States

According to this MigratIon Policy Institute report, in 2011, the United States granted humanitarian protection to nearly 81,000 immigrants, including some 56,000 refugees and 25,000 asylum seekers. This article takes a detailed look at the most recent refugee and asylum data in the United States – finding that asylum grants in 2011 reversed a downward trend observed since 2007.  More than 40 percent of foreigners who obtained US asylum in 2011 were from China, Venezuela, and Ethiopia. 


October 2, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Immigrants Can Challenge Decisions from Outside the U.S.

From the American Immigration Council:

Fifth Circuit Joins Other Courts in Holding That Immigrants Can Pursue Cases From Outside the United States

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit rejected the government’s ongoing attempt to bar noncitizens from seeking reopening and reconsideration of their cases from outside the United States. Ruling in two companion cases, the court found that the “departure bar”—a regulation barring noncitizens from pursuing their cases after departure or deportation— is unlawful. In so doing, the court adopted arguments offered by the American Immigration Council's Legal Action Center (LAC) and the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) in an amicus brief to the court. These decisions are an important step toward ensuring that all noncitizens are afforded the opportunity to fully present their cases to an immigration judge and the Board of Immigration Appeals.

In the first of the two cases, Lari v. Holder, the court struck down the departure bar in the context of a motion to reconsider. Mr. Lari was represented by Matthew Hoppock of Dunn and Davison, LLC. The LAC and NIPNLG filed an amicus brief and argued in support of Mr. Lari. In the second case, Garcia Carias v. Holder, the court struck down the departure bar in the context of a motion to reopen. Mr. Garcia Carias was represented by Boston College’s Post-Deportation Human Rights Project and Nixon Peabody LLP. 

The LAC and NIPNLG have coordinated post-departure litigation nationwide. To date, nine circuit courts have rejected the departure bar. Nonetheless, the Board of Immigration Appeals continues to deny certain motions (including some involving asylum applicants) where ICE deported the noncitizen before the motion was decided. The LAC and NIPNLG are working to prevent the government’s attempted end run around the favorable court decisions. Please contact us at the email below if you have such a case. 

Read more about the LAC and NIPNLG’s challenges to the departure bar on our website, Motions to Reopen from Outside the Country.


October 2, 2012 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Monday, October 1, 2012

President Obama to Establish César E. Chávez National Monument

Chavez pic

On October 8, 2012, President Obama will travel to Keene, California to announce the establishment of the César E. Chávez National Monument. Years in the making, the monument – which will be designated under the Antiquities Act – will be established on the property known as Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz (Our Lady Queen of Peace), or La Paz. The La Paz property is recognized worldwide for its historic link to civil rights icon César Estrada Chávez and the farm worker movement. The site served as the national headquarters of the United Farm Workers (UFW) as well as the home and workplace of César Chávez and his family from the early 1970’s until Chávez’ death in 1993, and includes his grave site which will also be part of the monument.  Read the Full Press Release


October 1, 2012 in Current Affairs | Permalink | TrackBack (0)