Tag Archives: Reform

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 167

Let us Join Together in Prayer for a Safe and Happy New Year!

Resources for Workers and Students. While we wait to see what changes may emerge in immigration law in the coming year, there are resources available to help immigrants know their rights. See CLINIC publications explaining rights for students https://cliniclegal.org/resources/know-your-rights-students  and for workers https://cliniclegal.org/resources/know-your-rights-workers.

National Migration Week Is Coming. National Migration Wek will be January 8 – 14, 2017, Make us of this USCCB Justice for Immigrants toolkit in parishes and other communities http://www.justiceforimmigrants.org/documents/NMW-2017-Toolkit_000.pdf.

New Immigration Facility May be Coming to Georgia. GEO, a provider of private prison services, announced that it has contracted to operate a new immigration detention center in Folkston, Georgia. The operation will be housed in an existing 780 bed facility in Folkston, Georgia. http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20161219005621/en/GEO-Group-Announces-Contract-780-Beds-Existing#.WFkA2ssbEds.email.

 

 

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 166

Breaking News – USCCB Announces New Bishops Working Group in Anticipation of Immigration Changes. The new bishops working group will look at what is being done pastorally in U.S. dioceses and will share best practices with bishops throughout the country. Details at: http://www.catholicnews.com/services/englishnews/2016/usccb-forms-working-group-to-monitor-needs-of-migrants-refugees.cfm. Archbishop Jose Gomez, archbishop of Los Angeles will chair the working group. See also comments by Cardinal Blaise Cupich of Chicago. http://www.catholicnewworld.com/column/archbishop-cupich/2016/12/11/us-bishops-to-immigrants-we-stand-with-you.

“Am I not with you, I who am your mother?” This Our Lady to St. Juan Diego. Celebrating the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, bishops across the country addressed the increased concern for immigrants and refugees. “We might be poor, but we’ll never be alone,” said Bishop Mario Dorsonville, auxiliary bishop of Washington, as he reflected on the Holy Family with people in the pews. some who were likely facing similar situations. https://cnstopstories.com/2016/12/15/after-a-year-of-setbacks-uncertainty-looms-for-immigrants-in-2017/

Likewise, Bishop Stephen Blair invoked Our Lady of Guadalupe: https://togoforth.org/2016/12/12/bishop-blaire-of-stockton-issues-strong-statement-on-feast-of-our-lady-of-guadalupe/

Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio spoke of the security needed for all. https://www.ncronline.org/blogs/ncr-today/brooklyn-bishop-pledges-support-dioceses-immigrants-against-deportations?utm_source=CLINIC+Mail&utm_campaign=e21acd62e3-CLINIC_Daily_12-12-16&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_a33179621a-e21acd62e3-279160521

ICYMI — All Students Have Rights. At a time when anti-immigrant behavior is appearing in schools (https://www.splcenter.org/20161128/trump-effect-impact-2016-presidential-election-our-nations-schools#executive), a good source of information about the rights of students is found at: https://cliniclegal.org/resources/know-your-rights-students This booklet can be shared with parents as well as school administrators.

Happy Christmas! Feliz Navidad! With family and friends over the upcoming weeks, we pray in particular for peoples around the world who are forced to flee their homes.

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 165

Prayer Reminder. December 12 is designated as a day of prayer and solidarity with families of immigrants. Throughout Advent and the New Year, a good way to pray for migrant peoples is by praying the rosary with Our Lady of Guadalupe and Families of Immigrants. http://www.usccb.org/news/2016/16-168.cfm

A Catholic Way Forward. In this time of transition, Catholic leaders consistently point forward in a way forward that serves humanity consistent with our beliefs. https://cnstopstories.com/2016/12/05/a-way-forward-on-immigration/ ; http://stcloudvisitor.org/2016/09/14/catholics-urged-reject-partisan-views-migration-heed-gospel-message/ “It’s the work of the church to be a presence and to make available a space for people to feel welcome,” said Bishop Flores of Brownsville.

All Students Have Rights. At a time when anti-immigrant behavior is appearing in schools (https://www.splcenter.org/20161128/trump-effect-impact-2016-presidential-election-our-nations-schools#executive), a good source of information about the rights of students is found at: https://cliniclegal.org/resources/know-your-rights-students This booklet can be shared with parents as well as school administrators.

Family Detention Centers. A state court judge in Austin, Texas, ruled that the state could not license detention centers as childcare facilities — a victory for common sense. This decision impacts two federal immigration detention centers in Dilley and Karnes City, Texas, which incarcerate migrant and refugee women and children. These facilities are located within the Archdiocese of San Antonio. Their archbishop reacted with approval, but was dismayed when the state appealed the decision. See more at: https://www.archsa.org/news/statement-of-archbishop-gustavo-garcia-siller-msps-on-state-district-judge#sthash.GbvmnhZ4.dpuf. CLINIC and other immigration advocates have opposed these prisons while seeking to help those detained receive fair treatmen

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 164

Breaking News from the USCCB. On December 1, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops announced that the feast of Our Lady Of Guadalupe, December 12, would be commemorated as a Day Of Prayer And Solidarity With Families Of Immigrants.  Cardinal Daniel DiNardo said: “To all those families separated and far from home in uncertain times, we join with you in a prayer for comfort and joy this Advent season” http://www.usccb.org/news/2016/16-168.cfm.The announcement made reference to the Scriptural Rosary reflecting on aspects of the mysteries related to migrating peoples http://www.justiceforimmigrants.org/documents/Scriptural-Rosary-Eng.pdf.

DACA Students in Colleges and Universities. It is no secret that there is a high likelihood that the Trump Administration will end the DACA program for young people brought into the United States at an early age although the terms of ending the program are still uncertain. Nonetheless, the leadership of Catholic colleges and universities have announced their intention to protect their students to the greatest extent possible https://cnstopstories.com/2016/11/30/catholic-college-presidents-pledge-support-for-students-with-daca-status/. Emory University in Atlanta has announced that it is becoming a “sanctuary university” even though it could be punished by the lass of Georgia state funding. http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/11/29/emory-could-lose-state-funding-if-it-declares-a-sanctuary-campus-to-shield-immigrants/

Alternatives to DACA. Over 700,000 individuals have taken advantage of the DACA program since its inception but the program had a fundamental weakness in that it was instituted by executive order, not a Congressional statute. In light of the possibility that President-elect Trump will do away with DACA when he takes office, several senators are considering legislation to shield children living in the country illegally from being deported if they grew up in the United States and have stayed out of trouble. http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/308380-senators-crafting-legislation-to-limit-deportations-under-trump

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 163

Pope Francis Decries the Animosity Toward Immigrant Peoples. Pope Francis continues to support migrating people and refugees by decrying the negative positions of people who reject them http://www.reuters.com/article/us-pope-cardinals-idUSKBN13E0HE.

Archbishop Gomez Also Speaks Out in His Quiet Way. Archbishop Jose Gomez, archbishop of Los Angeles and newly elected vice president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, was recently profiled in the Los Angeles Times as he asked for prayer to fix the broken immigration system before people were hurt by needless deportations. “Not politics. It’s about people.” http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-archbishop-gomez-trump-20161122-story.html

Justice for Immigrants Campaign. The USCCB Justice for Immigrants has also published materials to help parishes and religious communities in talking about immigration under the new Administration in light of the fears among parishioners. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-archbishop-gomez-trump-20161122-story.html

ICYMI — What Can Be Done To Prepare? Exactly what the new administration will do or how quickly it will act is uncertain. CLINIC has published information for addressing issues that will be raised with the new administration. https://cliniclegal.org/presidentialtransition These issues are continuously developing as information comes from the new administration even though it is likely that definitive information will not be available until after January 20, 2017. Remember that no matter who is president, all persons have rights that a president cannot just eliminate. Review your rights. https://www.nilc.org/issues/immigration-enforcement/everyone-has-certain-basic-rights/

 

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 161

Election and New Administration. The Trump administration does not take office until January 20, 2017 but those concerned with immigrants cannot ignore the changes that President-Elect Trump has promised with respect to immigrants and refugees. Immigration experts, such as those at the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, sponsored by the bishops of the United States, are giving careful consideration to the effects of the election and will be developing plans to help individuals and families as exact policies emerge. In the meantime, those working with immigrants and refugees should proceed with caution so as not to create unwarranted alarm but recognizing the need to begin planning for whatever dramatic changes come. We will keep you apprised of the this developing situation over the next months.

ICYMI – TEXT4Refugees – Citizenship Information for Refugees and Asylees. CLINIC is providing a new service. Refugees, asylees and anyone interested in learning more about citizenship will benefit from CLINIC’s monthly text messages about the citizenship application process. See more information at: https://cliniclegal.org/citizenshipnavigator/texting

Pope Francis. In an interview during the past week, Pope Francis expressed his concern for the plight of immigrants and refugees. Mindful of the election in the United States, the Holy Father emphasized that the Church does not judge individual politicians but the policies that affect the poor and marginalized. http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2016/11/11/popes_concern_for_immigrants_in_la_repubblica_interview/1271490

 

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 160

Are You Eligible for Naturalization?  If you want free assistance in seeking naturalized citizenship, plan on attending the naturalization drive sponsored by the Latin American Association and Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta in collaboration with the New Americans Campaign partners, New American Pathways, IRC, GALEO, CPACS and Catholic Charities Atlanta.  Location: Latin American Association, 2750 Buford Highway, Atlanta, GA 30324. Date and Time: Saturday, November 12th, 2016 at 9:00am. More information at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdpty0o4pY4A4KuvqG0GsRouxO9Uuc16rFuwXhfWm4l146VRg/viewform?c=0&w=1

TEXT4Refugees – Citizenship Information for Refugees and Asylees. CLINIC is providing a new service. Refugees, asylees and anyone interested in learning more about citizenship will benefit from CLINIC’s monthly text messages about the citizenship application process. See more information at: https://cliniclegal.org/citizenshipnavigator/texting

 Deportation of Haitian Refugees. CLINIC and its Catholic partners recently commended the Department of Homeland Security for temporarily halting deportations to Haiti after Hurricane Matthew but have also recommended steps to better address the needs of Haitians seeking protection from the humanitarian crisis. See more information about Haitian refugees at: https://cliniclegal.org/news/clinic-joins-catholic-partners-call-protect-haitians-after-hurricane-matthew

DACA Renewals. DACA registrations need to be renewed and it is extremely important to file early. The Department of Homeland Security’s process is backed up and some registrations are expiring before renewal is complete. http://ht.ly/Ut35305K5eQ CLINIC has tips for those caught in the process. https://cliniclegal.org/resources/articles-clinic/daca-processing-delays-and-tips-escalating-cases

November 8 is Election Day!  If you have not voted yet, study the impact of the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund (Constitutional amendment 2 on the Georgia ballot.) See information at SafeHarborYes.com.

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 159

ICYMI – Archdiocese of Atlanta Produces Faithful Citizenship Videos with Local Focus. Look at the Archdiocese of Atlanta website for the new videos encouraging conscientious voting. http://archatl.com/catholic-life/faithful-citizenship/ In particular, look at Archbishop Gregory’s introduction and the video on immigrants and refugees presented by Vanessa Russell, CEO of Catholic Charities Atlanta.

ICYMI – Vote “Yes” for Safe Harbor! The Georgia election ballot will contain a proposed constitutional amendment to secure funding for rehabilitative services for minors who have been trapped in human trafficking for sex. Traffickers prey on vulnerable youths, including those in migrant families without papers. See more about this important constitutional amendment and consider supporting rehabilitation services in the year of mercy and beyond. http://www.safeharboryes.com/

Papal Nuncio Celebrates Mass in Support of Immigration Reform. On October 23, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, was the principal celebrant at a Mass celebrated on both sides of the U.S. – Mexican border to show the Church’s support for immigration reform https://cruxnow.com/church-in-the-usa/2016/10/23/border-mass-popes-u-s-envoy-backs-immigration-reform/.

Cardinal-designate Tobin Speaks in Support of Resettling Refugees. Recently appointed Cardinal Joseph Tobin, Archbishop of Indianapolis, spoke at Notre Dame University in support of resettling refugees from Syria, including families sponsored by Catholic Charities of Indianapolis despite the opposition of Governor Mike Pence. With regard to one family, the Archbishop said: “(Governor) Pence,” invited “me to pray and seek God’s guidance, which I gladly did.” The family was then welcomed by the diocese and Catholic Charities, and is now living in Indianapolis http://www.todayscatholicnews.org/2016/10/cardinal-designate-tobin-urges-americans-to-welcome-refugees/.

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 158

Archdiocese of Atlanta Produces Faithful Citizenship Videos with Local Focus. Look at the Archdiocese of Atlanta website for the new videos encouraging conscientious voting http://archatl.com/catholic-life/faithful-citizenship/. In particular, look at Archbishop Gregory’s introduction and the video on immigrants and refugees presented by Vanessa Russell, CEO of Catholic Charities Atlanta.

ICYMI – Vote “Yes” for Safe Harbor! The Georgia election ballot will contain a proposed constitutional amendment to secure funding for rehabilitative services for minors who have been trapped in human trafficking for sex. Traffickers prey on vulnerable youths, including those in migrant families without papers. See more about this important constitutional amendment and consider supporting rehabilitation services in the year of mercy and beyond. http://www.safeharboryes.com/

Political Promises. As the 2016 election cycle moves toward November 8, immigration promises and threats from candidates become more numerous. Now is also the time to study those promises and question their sincerity. Keep in mind that after the election it will be important to hold elected officials accountable http://ht.ly/JVOy305iwTO.

Pope Francis on the Importance of Welcoming the Stranger. Strong words from the Holy Father to pilgrims from Germany. “It’s hypocrisy to call yourself a Christian and chase away a refugee or someone seeking help, someone who is hungry or thirsty, toss out someone who is in need of my help,” he said. “If I say I am Christian, but do these things, I’m a hypocrite” https://cnstopstories.com/2016/10/13/christians-who-reject-all-refugees-are-hypocrites-pope-says/.

Young People Are Benefiting From DACA. As the DACA program comes to its fourth anniversary, government reports tell us that 741,546 unauthorized young people have received DACA. If you are eligible for DACA but have not applied, now is the time to do so https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/immigration/news/2016/10/18/146290/new-study-of-daca-beneficiaries-shows-positive-economic-and-educational-outcomes/.

 

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Update 157

Immigration Updates Related to Hurricane Matthew. USCIS has issued new rules related to Hurricane Matthew. See more details if you are affected: http://us8.campaign-archive1.com/?u=d1e29c8d7ab34d84237ecd8ee&id=b0cdbfbe8c  Removal flights to Haiti have been temporarily suspended despite an earlier announcement by on September 22 that DHS was resuming regular deportations of Haitians.

Pope Francis Continues to Speak on the Suffering of Migrating People Throughout the World. Remembering World Refugee Day, Pope Francis highlighted the needs of “invisible and voiceless” refugee children https://cruxnow.com/vatican/2016/10/14/pope-issues-sos-invisible-voiceless-refugee-children/.

Attorneys in Immigration Court. No one should try to represent themselves in court and that is particularly true for immigrants in U.S. Immigration Court. Atlanta Immigration Court is getting a reputation as a difficult court for immigrants in the southeast. https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/in-an-immigration-court-that-nearly-always-says-no-a-lawyers-spirit-is-broken/2016/10/11/05f43a8e-8eee-11e6-a6a3-d50061aa9fae_story.html

Early Voting Begins in Georgia on October 17! Early in person voting begins in Georgia on October 17. Find details based on your voting location at: https://www.mvp.sos.ga.gov/MVP/mvp.do

ICYMI – Vote “Yes” for Safe Harbor! The Georgia election ballot will contain a proposed constitutional amendment to secure funding for rehabilitative services for minors who have been trapped in human trafficking for sex. Traffickers prey on vulnerable youths, including those in migrant families without papers. See more about this important constitutional amendment and consider supporting rehabilitation services in the year of mercy and beyond. http://www.safeharboryes.com/