Immigration is about people's lives. The ongoing discussion in the Letters to the Editor illustrates well the tension between laws and the way people live their lives. Though writing from different viewpoints, the authors seem to be able to agree that people who are working in the US illegally doing jobs most American do not want to do and supporting their families instead of looking for help from the government are not necessarily bad people. Yet they are in violation of the law. Current estimates of the number of people who are in the US illegally and whom the INS is unwilling or unable to find and remove range around 9 million. When this many people, who are not bad people, are in violation of a law, which was not meant to be a bad law, a new solution is needed. ILW.COM provides the forum opinions related to all aspects of immigration law. Send letters to email@example.com.
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ILW.COM Featured Article of the Day
Let's Do the Time Warp Again: The Magic of Nunc Pro Tunc
Jose Latour writes that in the hands of a sharp immigration attorney, nunc pro tunc is a virtual time machine where INS can literally turn the clock back and undo some pretty horrific messes.
Get new clients & keep them happy by staying on top of the latest! Adjustment is now quite complex & involves weighing many issues. So does Consular Processing (& traveling is a monkey wrench!) Noted attorney Ron Klasko (former AILA National President) will share his unique insights & guide you through the new subtleties & nuances in his seminar. Don't delay! Read all about it! For more info: http://ilw.com/seminars/adjustment.shtm
EOIR Disciplinary Actions
The Executive Office for Immigration Review's (EOIR) latest disciplinary actions under the Rules of Professional Conduct include two attorneys reinstatements, nine final orders and three immediate suspensions.
INS Enforcement of Immigration Laws a Management Challenge
A memorandum from Glenn A Fine, Inspector General, to the Attorney General cites as one of the top management challenges in the Department of Justice the INS's enforcement of immigration laws particularly its ability to deter illegal immigration and remove aliens who are here illegally.
Immigration in the Press
For Refugees, a Longer Wait at America's Door
According to the New York Times [registration required] the INS, in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks, has increased its scrutiny of refugees seeking to enter the United States and the relatives who sponsor their entry.
Citizenship Applications Up Sharply;
Anxiety, Allegiance Spur New Requests
The Washington Post reports that applications for US citizenship have surged in recent months, with many foreign residents rushing to become Americans because of the fallout from the September 11 attacks.
Closed Immigration Hearings Violate the Law
In an editorial in the Detroit News, Rep. John Conyers, Jr., criticizes the Department of Justice's decision to hold public immigration hearings behind closed doors.
ILW.COM Chats and Discussions of the Day
Chat with Alice Yardum-Hunter
Alice Yardum-Hunter will answers questions on all aspects of immigration law on Wednesday, January 23, 2002, at 9:00 p.m. Eastern (New York) time. Questions will be accepted beginning 15 minutes before the start of the chat.
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This Day in Immigration
From January 23, 2001
"Section 212(c) Relief for Aliens in Deportation Proceedings
The Executive Office for Immigration Review ("EOIR") has issued a final rule that creates a uniform procedure to allow certain aliens in deportation proceedings that commenced before April 24, 1996, to apply for relief pursuant to section 212(c), and provides a 180-day period for a defined class of aliens who had been adversely affected by the Soriano decision to file a motion to reopen in order to apply for section 212(c) relief."
Letters to the Editor
I must comment on Ms. Flowers' letter 1/22 which supports the continuous rewarding of individuals who have broken the law by entering the US illegally or by overstaying their respective visas illegally at the expense of the thousands that choose to wait their turn abroad and enter legally. If entering illegally or overstaying a visa was not a crime then they would not be here illegally and would not be deportable! They have committed a crime by breaking the immigration laws of the United States and should NEVER be rewarded with any type of amnesty just because they snuck in prior to the 3/10 year bar being promulgated by Congress. Does Ms. Flowers believe none of these people would have come in after the 3/10 year bar was passed? I think we all know the answer to that which is why we need to enforce our immigration laws to prevent further illegal immigration and expedite the cases of those trying to enter legally.
This letter is in response to Ms. Flower's letter concerning the recommended abolishment of the 3 and 10 year bars of Section 212(a)(9)(B), if section 245(i) is not reinstated. It seems to me that the 3 and 10 year bars were implemented in 1996 as part of IIRIRA, and as such, all the poor law-breakers subject to the bars had ample time to avoid the bars by leaving before September 1997 when the penalties of the 3/10 year bar kicked in. Of course, those same individuals have been eligible for relief under Section 245(i). So, it appears that Ms. Flowers concern is for those individuals who (1) are illegally present in the U.S., (2) were unable to file a viable petition for 245(i) relief, and (3) chose voluntarily to remain in the US despite the 3 and 10 year bars. Otherwise, her sympathy is for individuals who are illegally present in the U.S. and knowingly entered the US after the 3 and 10 year bars were implemented. My sympathy still rests with the
law-abiding applicants for immigrant visas who are waiting outside the US for their visas to be issued.
Manila (where many family members wait decades to enter the US legally)
Perhaps Ms. Christine M. Flowers, Esquire, misspoke when she said ..."we are not talking about criminals"... when referring to aliens illegally in the US. Title 8, U.S.C. (United States Code), Section 1325, says that any alien who enters the US without inspection or who "attempts to enter or obtains entry" by lying or concealing a material fact "shall," for the first conviction, be sentenced under Title 18, U.S.C., to not more than 6 months in prison and/or fined. (Not an exact quote - that's even longer.) While few of these people are "bad," they have committed a crime. If we, as a country of laws, ignore these millions of criminal violations, where does that leave us with other laws that many people consider unjust - drugs, IRS, etc.?
John H. Frecker
I have read the responses to my letter of January 16, which you published. In the service of my government, I spent several years working in Mexico and there I learned to appreciate the people of that country. Since my retirement back to the mid-western city of my birth, I continued my interest in the welfare of the Mexican people. I attend church services at a Spanish language church, which on Sundays is filled wall-to-wall, standing room only, with Mexicans and other Latinos who come to worship. There I see and admire the Mexican devotion to family life. I have social contact with them and am aware that many are undocumented. Most have employment, generally in menial jobs. None that I know are dependent on social services. They are all very conscientious about being law abiding, as they want to avoid problems. Many indicate they want to obtain permanent legal residence here at some time (just as my ancestors did).
Mr. Frecker, who favors immigration restriction, in his January 17 letter agrees with me: "the vast majority of them (Mexicans) are honest hard-working people who are coming here to make a decent living." These undocumented Mexicans now in our country had as much of a chance of getting here legally as I do of winning my state lottery when I never buy a ticket. As one recently told me, "We didn't come here to break a law. We came because we and our families were hungry and we had no work." It is admirable that many send as much as they do back to support their loved ones. This is not country allegiance; this is family devotion. (My grandfather did the same for his German parents years ago.) With the possible exception of the nursing profession, our country has an abundance of educated skilled personnel. It is with the low -paying unpleasant jobs that we have problems. These are the jobs that the Mexican immigrants are filling. They are the ones who bus the tables in our restaurants and wash the dishes in the kitchens. They wield the picks and shovels in our constructions. They are the gardeners who landscape our yards (the ones who actually work the dirt). They harvest the fruits and vegetables that are on our tables. They sweat in our factories and warehouses. They do the hard, menial, dirty jobs that no one else will do. Immigration regulations should consider these classes of employment and those who do these jobs now (and have been doing so without papers for many years).Their contributions should be acknowledged and they should be granted legal status.
Richard E. Baer, DVM
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We are seeking at least two attorneys to practice in the areas of business and family immigration, port of entry inspections, and consular processing. Applicants should have at least 2 to 5 years of experience. Depending upon experience and practice, limited equity shareholder positions may be available. Board certification an obvious and appreciated plus. Ability to speak Spanish as well as other languages preferred. Excellent internet and legal writing skills are required. The positions are in El Paso with the firm of Kemp Smith, P.C. The firm has been in existence for over 100 years and has another location in Austin. El Paso offers close proximity to the US Consulate in Cd. Juarez and a user friendly INS district office as well as several ports of entry. The firm's web site is at www.kempsmith.com. For further information, please contact Kathleen Walker at 915-546-5325 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On January 31st & February 1st 2002, the National Immigration Forum will host its inaugural conference “A Nation of Immigrants in the 21st Century: Moving Forward in a Time of New Challenges.” The conference will be held at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. For details, click here. For registration form, click here.
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