The bipartisan group of senators knows as The Gang of Eight will release their immigration reform bill this week. The proposal is expected to overhaul the current system and give millions of undocumented immigrants in the United States a pathway to citizenship.
On Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security announced a rule change that will help undocumented immigrants who are immediate relatives of American citizens. Julia Preston, national immigration correspondent for Takeaway partner The New York Times, explains the intricacies of this new policy, which may affect up to one million people.
Since 2008, the Obama administration has deported over 1 million illegal immigrants, the highest number in six decades. However, this crackdown has not only affected illegal immigrants. A new investigation into the Secure Communities program finds that hundreds of American citizens have been detained because immigration officials thought they were illegal immigrants.
According to new figures released by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Obama administration has deported a record number of illegal immigrants for the third year in a row. Yesterday, The Takeaway spoke to Frontline correspondent Maria Hinojosa about an investigation into detention centers and deportation proceedings. She explained that some of the individuals picked up by immigration enforcement are, in fact, legal immigrants with green cards.
Alabama has become the latest state to enact very strict new immigration policy. The new law, signed by Governor Robert Bentley, is said to be the most severe in the country, including Arizona’s controversial SB1070. The new Alabama law will require public schools to verify the immigration status of all elementary and secondary students and will bar enrollment to illegal immigrants seeking to attend college.
Due to a rule with a filing deadline, many refugees with legitimate claims have been denied political asylum in the U.S. For many of these refugees, getting asylum could be the difference between life and death.
Over the past 12 years, about 21,000 refugees seeking asylum were denied because of they missed the filing deadline; it is a complicated process that many feel needs immediate changing.
According to a new study released on Wednesday by the Pew Hispanic Center, roughly one in twelve babies born in the United States in 2008 had at least one parent who was an illegal immigrant. (That is around 8 percent, or roughly 340,000 of the 4.3 million babies born in the U.S. in 2008.) About 85 percent of those parents are Hispanic. This study comes at a time when several Republican senators are asking for a review of the 14th Amendment, which grants automatic citizenship to children born on U.S. soil.
After the House's historical vote to reform health care on Sunday, many Americans are asking, what's the next big reform issue? If you ask the thousands of protesters who descended on Washington over the weekend, immigration tops the bill. The last attempt to overhaul the immigration system was defeated in Congress three years ago.
A Los Angeles–based clothing company is laying off 1,800 immigrant employees in the coming weeks at the behest of the Obama administration. And it's not just any company — it's American Apparel, a business that has made a name for itself for paying its workers a better-than-fair wage and offering in-factory massages. (And, yes, they have also made a name for themselves with their over-the-top "sex sells" advertising.) Are the layoffs at American Apparel the start of a larger storm to come, in which more companies will be asked to let immigrants go? New York Times immigration reporter Julia Preston gives us the details.
For more, read Julia Preston's article, Immigration Crackdown With Firings, Not Raids, in today's New York Times.
The Obama administration seems to be taking a softer approach to illegal immigrants than the Bush White House did. Gone are the days of Federal Agents swarming a warehouse and making mass arrests. Force is being replaced by fees. The White House said yesterday that they would focus on fines and civil sanctions and not criminal charges when business are suspected of employing large numbers of illegal immigrants. Joining us this morning is New York Times national immigration correspondent Julia Preston.
For more, read Julia Preston's article, U.S. Shifts Strategy on Illicit Work by Immigrants, in The New York Times.