Wednesday, December 20, 2017
Immigration Article of the Day: Does Legal Status Affect Educational Attainment in Immigrant Families? by Zachary D. Liscow and William A Woolston
From the Bookshelves: Noncitizenism: Recognising Noncitizen Capabilities in a World of Citizens by Tendayi Bloom
Noncitizens have always been present in liberal political philosophy. Often hard to situate within traditional frameworks that prioritise citizenship, noncitizens can appear voiceless and rightsless, which has implications for efforts towards global justice and justice in migration. This book proposes an alternative.
Noncitizenism identifies an analytical category of noncitizenship. While maintaining the importance of citizenship, noncitizenship is another form of special individual-State relationship. It operates far from a State, at its borders, and within its territory, providing a tool for examining the continuity between sites of engagement and the literatures, questions, and conclusions relating to them. The book argues that an accurate liberal theoretical framework, and one which can address contemporary challenges, must acknowledge the political relationship of noncitizenship between individuals and States.
This book is for students and scholars of political philosophy and for those interested in noncitizenship and how it can inform the response of liberal theory, citizenship, global justice, migration studies, political theory and policy work.
Tendayi Bloom is Lecturer in Politics and International Studies at The Open University, UK.
Tuesday, December 19, 2017
We are an alliance of American college and university leaders dedicated to increasing public understanding of how immigration policies and practices impact our students, campuses and communities. We support policies that create a welcoming environment for immigrant, undocumented and international students on our campuses. Read more...
John Tu, CEO of Kingston Technology, came to the U.S. from China on a family-based visa. He obtained an F4 visa as the sibling of a U.S. citizen. (That sister became a U.S. citizen after marrying a U.S. citizen.)
Forbes has a terrific write-up on Tu, who is the entrepreneur behind Kingston Technology, “the world's largest independent manufacturer of memory products.” Tu himself is on the list of the Forbes 400 wealthiest individuals in the United States (coming in at #87).
The story is timely since it runs counter to President Trump's recent and vociferous opposition to "chain migration" as a drain on the economy.
I've posted the draft of a forthcoming piece in UC Davis Law review for comments. The fact that DACA recipients—and essentially all Dreamers—have become part of the conscience of the country and a critical part of the economy is illustrated by the strong support for them exhibited by major businesses in the United States. Dozens of CEOs from companies like Microsoft, Amazon, Netflix, AT&T, Wells Fargo, Google, and Facebook urged the president to preserve the program. After the Trump Administration announced the rescission of the DACA program on September 5, 2017, even more companies denounced the action and called on Congress to pass the Dream Act before the DACA termination date of March 5, 2018.
Although the statements of support for DACA recipients and Dreamers, and calls for passage of the Dream Act are important, are employers willing to do more? In this draft essay, I challenge employers to engage in civil disobedience and to continue to hire Dreamers even after their employment authorization expires. I review the notion of corporate civil disobedience, and explain why such action in this context would be a bold statement and can prove vital to bringing about a permanent, fair outcome for Dreamers. The essay draft can be downloaded here.
Any comments and suggestions that readers may have on this draft would be appreciated.
The Immigrant Cookbook: Recipes That Make America Great by Leyla Moushabeck (released December 2015)
More than 42 million people living in the United States came here from other countries. Since its beginnings, America has been a haven for people seeking refuge from political or economic troubles, or simply those in search of adventure and prosperity in a land where opportunity is promised to all. These émigrés, from every corner of the world, helped make America great long before the 2016 election.
Along with their hopes and dreams, they brought valuable gifts: recipes from their homelands that transformed the way America eats. What would the Southwest be without its piquant green chili pepper sauces and stews, New York City without its iconic Jewish delis, Dearborn without its Arab eateries, or Louisiana without the Creole and Cajun flavors of its signature gumbos and jambalayas? Imagine an America without pizza or pad Thai, hummus or hot dogs, sushi or strudel for most people, it wouldn t taste much like America at all.
In these times of troubling anti-immigrant rhetoric, THE IMMIGRANT COOKBOOK: RECIPES THAT MAKE AMERICA GREAT offers a culinary celebration of the many ethnic groups that have contributed to America s vibrant food culture. This beautifully photographed cookbook features appetizers, entrees, and desserts some familiar favorites, some likely to be new encounters by renowned chefs from Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, and Europe.
In reviewing the book, Noor Brara in Vogue writes:
Released yesterday, President Trump's National Security Strategy plan offers national security strategies designed to "make America great again." Page 9 discusses immigration and folds immigration into the national security plan:
"Strengthening control over our borders and immigration system is central to national security, economic prosperity, and the rule of law. Terrorists, drug traffickers, and criminal cartels exploit porous borders and threaten U.S. security and public safety. These actors adapt quickly to outpace our defenses.
The United States affirms our sovereign right to determine who should enter our country and under what circumstances. The United States understands the contributions immigrants have made to our Nation throughout its history. Illegal immigration, however, burdens the economy, hurts American workers, presents public safety risks, and enriches smugglers and other criminals.
The United States recognizes that decisions about who to legally admit for residency, citizenship, or otherwise are among the most important a country has to make. The United States will continue to welcome lawful immigrants who do not pose a security threat and whose entry is consistent with the national interest, while at the same time enhancing the screening and vetting of travelers, closing dangerous loopholes, revising outdated laws, and eliminating easily exploited vulnerabilities. We will also reform our current immigration system, which, contrary to our national interest and national security , allows for randomized entry and extended-family chain migration. Residency and citizenship determinations should be based on individuals’ merits and their ability to positively contribute to U.S. society , rather than chance or extended family connections."
On December 15, a post was added to the White House blog reading:
"Most green cards in the United States are awarded based on an antiquated system of family ties, not skill or merit. This system of Chain Migration – whereby one immigrant can bring in their entire extended families, who can bring in their families and so on – de-skills the labor force, puts downward pressure on wages, and increases the deficit. Chain Migration also undermines national security, by failing to establish merit-based criteria for evaluating entrants into the United States – instead, familial relations are all that is required to obtain a green card and, in turn, become a voting U.S. Citizen within a short period of time, with access to Federal welfare and government benefits."
The statement appears to be part of a concerted challenge to family-based immigration, an important feature of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952. "Chain migration" has been blamed by President Trump and Fox News for allowing into the country the suspect in the New York attack a few weeks ago. The alternative of a "merit" system has been proposed in the RAISE Act, which would (1) reduce family-based immigration by one-half; and (2) add a system based on English-speaking ability, youth, education, and resources.
Amy Howe on SCOTUSBlog writes about the Trump administration's latest immigration foray in the Supreme Court. Two months ago, a 17-year-old pregnant teenager who had been caught trying to enter the United States illegally won an order from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit clearing the way for her to have an abortion. She obtained the abortion the next day, before the Trump administration could go to the Supreme Court. Last night, the U.S. government demonstrated that it will not take any chances with similar cases going forward. Within hours of a ruling by a federal trial court that would allow another pregnant teenager in immigration custody to obtain an abortion, the government, asked the justices to put the trial court’s order on hold while it appeals to the D.C. Circuit and, if necessary, the Supreme Court.
After the filing in the Supreme Court, the D.C. Circuit put the trial court’s order on hold for 24 hours, until approximately 6 pm on December 20, and it has ordered attorneys for the teenager to respond this morning, with the government’s reply brief due by 3 p.m. Howe observes that the latest "order could reduce the need for the Supreme Court to act immediately."
Monday, December 18, 2017
Elizabeth Gibson, Staff Attorney, New York Legal Assistance Group and Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow, offers some thoughts in the Huffington Post on a social justice education holiday gift -- "the gift of literary empathy."
When politics differ, and this year there has been a lot of differing, how do you push back and educate without the entire meal exploding? Surely, there is a healthier method than twisting your napkin in knots under the table?
This year, consider a sneak attack in the form of literature. Infiltrate the book shelves of your familial adversaries with holiday gifts that make the recipients think. Distract them with engaging plots while slipping in social justice morals.
Here are Gibson's suggested books:
Stephen Manning. Image from Facebook
The ABA Journal reports that Financial Times has named a lawyer who uses technology and data analytics in immigrant and asylum representation as the top legal innovator in North America.
Manning has helped create large pro bono networks to defend refugees. His Innovation Law Lab uses data analytics to help lawyers create best practices to help lawyers in immigration and refugee cases, according to program director Ian Philabaum, who spoke with PRP FM this summer.
Innovation Law Lab leads lawyers representing asylum seekers seeking release from detention centers. “Called Massive Collaborative Representation, the results have been dramatic,” Financial Times reports. “In 2016, the project advocated the release from detention of over 30,000 women and children, representing a 99 percent success rate. In 2014, by comparison, nearly all women and children who had been held in detention centers were deported, he says.”
Throughout human history, migration has been a courageous expression of the individual’s will to overcome adversity and to live a better life. Today, globalization, together with advances in communications and transportation, has greatly increased the number of people who have the desire and the capacity to move to other places.
This new era has created challenges and opportunities for societies throughout the world. It also has served to underscore the clear linkage between migration and development, as well as the opportunities it provides for co-development, that is, the concerted improvement of economic and social conditions at both origin and destination.
Migration draws increasing attention in the world nowadays. Mixed with elements of unforeseeability, emergency, and complexity, the challenges and difficulties of international migration require enhanced cooperation and collective action among countries and regions. The United Nations is actively playing a catalyst role in this area, with the aim of creating more dialogues and interactions within countries and regions, as well as propelling experience exchange and collaboration opportunities.
On September 19, 2016 the United Nations General Assembly adopted a set of commitments during its first ever summit on large movements of refugees and migrants to enhance the protection of refugees and migrants. These commitments are known as the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants (NY Declaration). The NY Declaration reaffirms the importance of the international protection regime and represents a commitment by Member States to strengthen and enhance mechanisms to protect people on the move. It paves the way for the adoption of two new global compacts in 2018: the global compact on refugees and the global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration.
The hills are alive, with the sound of music. At least they were last night when ABC aired the Rogers and Hammerstein classic, The Sound of Music.
Did you know that the movie is fictionalized version of the memoir penned by Maria Augusta von Trapp: The Story of the Trapp Family Singers. Maria really was a postulate in a convent when she began caring for the seven children of the widowed naval commander Georg von Trapp. She even ran away to the abbey after the commander proposed, though she eventually married him an had three children of her own. And the family had a career singing and performing in Austria as well as the U.S. and Canada.
The family didn't run across the hills to escape the Nazis. They left the country by train. And they emigrated to Stowe, Vermont in the 1940s, where they ran a music camp. That's Maria's real certificate of entry above!
For more on the Von Trapps, check out this article from Prologue Magazine.
Amy Wax and Jason Richwine in an op/ed in the Philadelphia Inquirer have called for the end of the immigration of low-skilled workers in order to protect U.S. workers. Neither is a stranger to controversy, with Richwine having left the Heritage Foundation soon after news circulated about his Ph.D. dissertation advocating the reduction of the immigration of people with low IQs, including many Latinos. Earlier this year, Wax generated controversy with an op/ed on the need to “re-embrace of bourgeois norms.” Although Richwine has written previously on immigration, I do not recall Wax having written scholarship on the topic
In the op/ed, Wax and Richwine offer support to the calls by President Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions for strong immigration enforcement to benefit American workers. I am quite confident that most economists would disagree. For some commentary on the issue, click here.
Here is ImmigrationProf's Top 10 Immigration Stories for 2017, a memorable year indeed:
1. President Donald Trump. President Trump’s fiery immigration rhetoric and tough immigration enforcement policies unquestionably were the biggest immigration story in the United States in 2017. It is hard to know where to start, from the travel bans to immigration enforcement executive orders to the end of DACA to many statements and initiatives greatly increasing fear in the immigrant communities. President Trump's aggressive immigration measures might only have been topped by his tough, often caustic, immigration rhetoric. The good news is that the Trump administration's immigration measures have revitalized and inspired the immigrant rights movement.
2. The End of DACA. After months of speculation, the Trump administration, in an announcement by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in September began the phasing out of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, President Obama's signature immigration initiative. The future of DACA recipients was thrown into disarray. There were protests of the end of DACA across the country and many calls for congressional action to address the many deficiencies with the immigration laws.
3. The Pardon of Joe Arpaio In August, President Trump pardoned former Maricopa County (Arizona) Sheriff Joe Arpaio. After a criminal contempt trial, a U.S. district court had found Arpaio to have intentionally refused to comply with court orders that he not engage in unlawful racial profiling of Latina/os in Arizona, U.S citizens as well as immigrants. In continued violation of numerous court orders, Arpaio continued his discriminatory law enforcement practices and even had an investigator tail the wife of the district court judge who ordered the injunction. Not surprisingly, the pardon was widely criticized.
4. Chief Justice of California Criticizes ICE Operations at the California Courthouses. In March, Chief Justice of California Tani Cantil-Sakauye expressed concerns with federal immigration enforcement operatiuons at the California courthouses in a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and then-Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security John Kelly. Her specific concerns centered on "reports from some of our trial courts that immigration agents appear to be stalking undocumented immigrants in our courthouses to make arrests." California's courageous Chief Justice received a less than friendly response from the Attorney General and DHS Secretary.
5. Defense Verdict in Kate Steinle Case. The tragedy of Kate Steinle's death on the San Francisco waterfront became a front page immigration football for, among others, President Trump. In November, a San Francisco jury reached a verdict in the trial of a homeless undocumented immigrant in the fatal shooting of Steinle. The jury found for the defense on all counts but a firearms charge. The verdict provoked much discussion and debate. President Donald Trump, who had previously talked about the Steinle case as an example of why undocumented immigration was out of control, condemned the verdict. He tweeted that the not guilty verdict in the Steinle murder trial was “disgraceful.” Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, a Mexican citizen who had been released from a San Francisco jail and had previously been deported many times, had been charged with murder.
6. The Supreme Court and Immigration. The Supreme Court's 2016 Term ended with a whimper in its remaining immigration cases. On the last day of the Term, the Court agreed to review the travel ban decisions in the 2017 Term (a grant that it later dismissed as moot in the wake of the issuance of a new travel ban by President Trump). The Court also decided Hernandez v. Mesa, which involved a cross border shooting by U.S. immigration enforcement officer of a young Mexican national. The Court in a per curiam opinion vacated and remanded the case to the court of appeals to consider whether the family could sue for violation of the Fourth Amendment. Last but not least, on the last day of the Term, the Court ordered reargument in two immigration cases that were re-argued in October -- Jennings v. Rodriguez (reviewing the legality of detention of immigrants without a bond hearing) and Sessions v. Dimaya (reviewing a Ninth Circuit decision, written by Judge Stephen Reinhardt, striking down a criminal removal provision as unconstitutionally vague). Justice Kagan later recused herself in the Jennings case.
The Court earlier in the 2016 Term had decided four decisions touching on immigration, with the decisions generally favoring the immigrant:
1. Sessions v. Morales-Santana (invalidating gender distinctions favoring women over men based on antiquated on stereotypes in derivative citizenship laws).
2. Esquivel-Quintana v. Sessions (interpreting criminal removal provision and finding in favor of noncitizen convicted of a crime).
3. Maslenjak v.. United States (finding in favor of a U.S. citizen in a denaturalization case).
4. Lee v. United States (finding in favor if immigrant in ineffective assistance of counsel case based on erroneous advice on immigration consequences of guilty plea).
7. Sanctuary resistance. As President Trump's immigration initiatives were put into place, many state and local governments resisted and sought to protect immigrant residents. California in fact became a "sanctuary" state. The Golden State made national news when, in a rebuke to President Trump’s expanded immigration enforcement measures, Governor Jerry Brown today signed “sanctuary state” legislation, vastly limiting who state and local law enforcement agencies can hold, question, and transfer at the request of federal immigration authorities. Senate Bill 54, which takes effect in January, has been hailed as part of a broader effort to protect more than 2.3 million undocumented immigrants living in the state. The law was met with swift denunciations from Trump administration officials and became the focus of a national debate over how far states and cities can go to prevent their officers from enforcing federal immigration laws. Here is my take on SB 54. A number of states, including New York, Hawaii, and others also have been resisting the Trump administration's aggressive immigration enforcement initiatives.
8. RAISE Act. Congress has debated comprehensive immigration reform for years. This summer, President Trump endorsed immigration reform in the name of the RAISE Act, S. 1720, which was introduced in the Senate by Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR) and David Perdue (R-GA). The RAISE Act would drastically reshape American immigration. The Act would cut the annual immigrant admissions by one-half by eliminating all family sponsorship beyond spouses and minor children of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents, and would reduce various family categories from 226,000 green cards to 88,000. The cuts to family-based immigration would reduce immigration from, among other nations, Mexico, China, and India. An analysis by the Migration Policy Institute looks critically at the RAISE Act. Besides dramatically reducing family-based immigration, the RAISE Act would replace the current selection scheme with a points system in which applicants would earn points based on "merit." The bill also seeks to eliminate the Diversity Visa program and further caps refugee admissions, cutting back lawful immigration by 100,000 a year. In total, the RAISE Act would lead to an overall reduction of legal immigration by 50 percent over the next decade. That would exacerbate the current problem of undocumented immigration.
9. Human Trafficking Deaths in San Antonio. News in July of a tragedy in Texas offered a frightening glimpse of the horrors of modern human trafficking. Outside a San Antonio Walmart morning, authorities found eight bodies and 30 undocumented immigrants in the trailer of a truck. The victims of trafficking were severely injured from overheating inside. A ninth person later died in hospital. A federal complaint was filed alleging that James Matthew Bradley Jr. unlawfully transported aliens in violation of law resulting in the deaths. Upon conviction, the offense is punishable by life imprisonment or death, a $250,000 fine, and three years of supervised release. Despite increased border enforcement, the smuggling of migrants into the United States continues to be a problem and a lucrative enterprise for some. For many years, death on the border (and here and here) as migrants attempt to make the journey to the United States have been commonplace. Increased immigration enforcement measures have re-routed migrants through deserts and mountains where migrants are more likely to die. Human smuggling has grown as a business enterprise.
10. A Family Slave? In a gripping family story, Alex Tizon, who passed away this past March, wrote in The Atlantic about his "family's slave," Lola, who was brought to the United States from the Philippines. Tizon tells about Eudocia Tomas Pulido called “Lola,” who his mother inherited from her father. Lola, a modern-day slave, worked as a domestic servant. As reported in one news story: "The article drew mixed reactions, with some labeling him complicit to the abuse of Lola—how was it allowed to go on for so long? Others acknowledged that the story was neither about glorification nor justification, but to give Lola the voice she was made to feel she never deserved. . . ."
Sunday, December 17, 2017
Immigration Articles of the Day: Movement Lawyers in the Fight for Immigrant Rights by Sameer M. Ashar
Immigration was not a central issue in the campaign, which is somewhat surprising because the state legislature in 2011 passed H.B. 56, an immigration enforcement measure even tougher in some respects than Arizona's infamous S.B. 1070.
Immigration Impact considers Senator Jones' views on immigration, including opposition to the wall along the U.S./Mexico border, pro-DREAM Act, and pro-immigration reform.
Friday, December 15, 2017
NPR reports that immigrants detained at four large centers used by Immigration and Customs Enforcement are subject to inhumane treatment, given insufficient hygiene supplies and medical care, and provided potentially unsafe food, according to a federal report.
The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General report concludes that:
"Our inspections of five detention facilities raised concerns about the treatment and care of ICE detainees at four of the facilities visited. Overall, we identified problems that undermine the protection of detainees’ rights, their humane treatment, and the provision of a safe and healthy environment. Although the climate and detention conditions varied among the facilities and not every problem was present at all of them, our observations, interviews with detainees and staff, and our review of documents revealed several issues. Upon entering some facilities, detainees were housed incorrectly based on their criminal history. Further, in violation of standards, all detainees entering one facility were strip searched. Available language services were not always used to facilitate communication with detainees. Some facility staff reportedly deterred detainees from filing grievances and did not thoroughly document resolution of grievances. Staff did not always treat detainees respectfully and professionally, and some facilities may have misused segregation. Finally, we observed potentially unsafe and unhealthy detention conditions. "
Attorney General Sessions Delivers Remarks on the Administration's Efforts to Combat MS-13 and Carry Out its Immigration Priorities
Along these lines, news outlets report that President Trump will be pushing "merit"-based immigration reform in the coming months, including in his State of the Union speech at the end of January.