Reduced Department of Justice (DOJ) resources adversely affect low-income parties in immigration proceedings. Non-profit organizations representing low-income individuals in immigration administrative proceedings may offer trained “accredited representatives” to their clients. The accredited representatives act much like attorneys in assisting clients, but they must be accredited by the DOJ. Approval of applications is now taking seventeen months, thus, effectively reducing the number of available representatives for low-income parties. The problem will be worsened if undocumented parties obtain a more reasonable path to citizenship. Read more here.
Archbishop Lori states the need for immigration reform. Speaking during National Migration week, Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore recognized the reason why many migrate to the United States whether they have documents or not. “Whether we agree or disagree with the current laws and policies of our own country, the fact remains that many people are coming each day to the United States to escape the extreme poverty, violence and persecution of their countries of origin.” We are compelled to help them because each migrant “bears God’s image and is beloved in his sight.”
Asylum seekers are being turned away. Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights declares, “Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” Yet many nations, including the United States, are becoming much less hospitable toward asylum seekers by sending them to other countries without adjudicating “whether they are unable or unwilling to return to their country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular group.” The United States is not the only country obligated to accept those seeking asylum, but our country has reduced its commitment in recent years.
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