ILW.COM brings you primary source material about immigration law. In the Letters to the Editor and Featured Article sections we provide a forum for people to express opinions and provide analysis about issues of immigration law. As the ongoing colloquy in the Letters to the Editor section demonstrates, different people presented with the same facts can come to different valid, though inconsistent, conclusions. Our standards for publishing items related to immigration law are two. We will not publish something we know to be factually inaccurate. We will not publish items that contain personal attacks or barnyard language. Beyond that, we encourage a variety of opinions and viewpoints. We trust that our readers are capable of assessing the strengths and weaknesses of an author's argument, and forming their own opinions. The American tradition of allowing for a respectful exchange of ideas and debate contributes to the flow of immigrants from around the world to this country.
The Attorney General announced the Department of Justice will soon issue T visas, created by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA) to protect women, children and men who are the victims of human trafficking. The new INS form needed to apply for this benefit is INS Form I-914, including Supplement A and Supplement B. The base fee of $200, plus $50 for each immediate family member filed concurrently on the same application to a total maximum fee of $400 per application. An additional fee for fingerprinting may be required. The address for filing is USINS, Vermont Service Center, 75 Lower Weldon St., St. Albans, VT 05479-0001.
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ILW.COM Featured Article of the Day
En Banc Ninth Circuit Decision - ET Comes Home
Carl Shusterman writes about the recent decision in Socop-Gonzalez v. INS, No. 98-70782 (9th Cir. Dec. 5, 2001), in which the court held that the 90-day period for submitting a Motion to Reopen was "equitably tolled" because the person relied on the erroneous advice of an INS officer when he withdrew his appeal.
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Misdemeanor Assault an Aggravated Felony
In US v. Urias-Escobar, No. 01-50553, (5th Cir. Jan. 23, 2002), the court found that the district court did nor err in concluding that a state conviction for misdemeanor assault was an aggravated felony under immigration law.
T Visas for Trafficking Victims
The Attorney General announced the Department of Justice will soon issue T visas, created by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA) to protect women, children and men who are the victims of human trafficking.
OIG Review of Visa Waiver Program
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) performed a follow-up review of the Visa Waiver program which found that it is a potentially significant risk to national security, and concluded that the INS should renew its efforts previously made in the original OIG report.
TWOV a Security Risk
The Office of the Inspector General has concluded that if the INS continues to operate the Transit Without Visa (TWOV) program, it must take immediate action to address security issues in order to enhance national security.
Immigration in the Press
At Border, Uptick in Illegal Crossings
The Christian Science Monitor reports that as the delays in crossing the border get shorter than they were immediately following September 11, the number of illegal immigrants attempting to sneak into the US - inside the trunks of cars, strapped under seats, and even soldered inside wheel wells - is beginning to tick upward again.
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This Day in Immigration
From January 25, 2001
"Aggravated Felony a Term of Art
The court in US v. Christopher, No. 00-10899 (11th Cir. Jan. 22, 2001), found the regardless of whether an offense is a misdemeanor under state law, it is as an aggravated felony for purposes of immigration law if it is a theft offense for which the term of imprisonment is at lease one year."
[Editor's Note: US v. Christopher is cited in US v. Urias-Escobar].
Letters to the Editor
I'm extremely disappointed ILW.COM chose to link to the 1-22-02 press release by CIS, "Census Bureau: Over 100,000 Illegal Aliens from the Middle East." In my opinion the CIS press release is xenophobic, race-baiting scapegoating at its worst. Most readers by now view FAIR as marginal "kooks," but CIS has somehow managed to seize the media eye as a respectable voice: it is not. Don't give them yet another outlet for their restrictionist agenda. There is plenty of hard news, good and bad, for you to report on day-by-day in immigration law without resorting to filling space with CIS propaganda.
Daniel M. Kowalski
Tindall & Foster, P.C.
Those who are serving the community and have no criminal records, such as murder or drug-related crimes, should be given the chance to prove their worth if integrated to American society. This way will lessen the numbers of illegal immigrants.
I've been reading with some interest the debate in the Letters to the Editor on ILW.COM regarding illegal/undocumented aliens in the US. I am a natural-born US citizen, and I have a few thoughts.
1. These people are breaking the law.
[To read the whole letter, click here].
The people who have to be convinced to change the law are the rank and file US citizen. Many elections where immigration was a key issue have shown that the government continues to be made up of people who support the will of the majority of their electors. It's those voters who need to be convinced that more immigration is necessary. I used the word "convinced" for a reason - in the US the right answer on matters of governmental policy is determined by the will of the majority of voting citizens. There is no absolute truth when it comes to issues that involve people.
Thank you for providing me the opportunity to respond to the writers who disagreed with my letter of January 22nd. While I strongly disagree with their viewpoints, I appreciate the fact that they took the time to respond. Free exchange of ideas is always desirable, and you are providing an interesting forum towards this end.
I will respond to each writer in the order of the appearance of their letters in the forum:
[To read the responses, click here].
To those who wrote, thank you for your views, with which I most vehemently, but respectfully, disagree.
Christine M. Flowers
I am so happy that many of your readers have acknowledged the presence of Mexicans here in this country. I just wanted to share a bit of history. Hopefully, that will help them understand. The states of Texas, California, New Mexico, part of Arizona and Colorado once belonged to Mexico. The Treaty of Guadalupe stipulated that the land that belonged to the Mexican citizens was to be given back to them. It never happened. Tijerina, a clergy in New Mexico fought for the rightful return of land to the heirs. He was extradited to Mexico.
Life is not fair! There are other nationalities waiting to emigrate to the United States. Why should Mexicans get priority? What should really be done, in fairness, is to make restitution for the land that was taken away from the Mexicans. Then, the land should be restored to its rightful
owners. And pay interest, too!
Then, after the land is returned to its original owners, with restitution for back rent, we can talk immigration. Many people have not read this side of American history.
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CLE PROGRAM ON HIV+ IMMIGRATION ASYLUM AND PETITIONED CASES
The Association of the Bar of the City of New York (Committee on Immigration and Nationality Law) and Gay Men's Health Crisis are sponsoring a CLE on "HIV+ Immigration Asylum and Petitioned Cases" on January 29, 2002, 6-9 pm, at The Association of the Bar, 42 West 44th Street. The program will include speakers from GMHC, an Immigration Judge and speakers from several international gay and lesbian human rights organizations, as well as a speaker from Human Rights Watch's new HIV project. For details and registration form, click here.
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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