Tag Archives: justice for immigrants

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 329

Immigration fees are increasing. The U.S. Department of Homeland security has issued a final rule increasing many fees for immigration related services by a weighted average of 20 percent. The rule also eliminates many exemptions which non-profit legal services have asserted on behalf of their clients. The increased fees will make it more difficult for low-income immigrants to obtain services. Many advocates, including Anna Gallagher, characterized the increase as a form of “wealth test for citizenship” and contrary to the dignity of immigrants. Read more here.

Have you missed a Justice for Immigrants (JFI) webinar? JFI presents valuable webinars. If you missed one or want to watch it again, you still have the opportunity. Visit their archives.

Are you looking for a good resource for Catholic social teaching and immigration? Justice for Immigrants has a good tool. Pope Francis is also focusing on Catholic social teaching as he begins a new series at his Wednesday general audiences.

This is meant for immigration lawyers… However, you can use it too. The Catholic Legal Immigration Network has developed a downloadable flyer to encourage participation in the census that is now being conducted. Share the information with any immigrant, documented or undocumented. Even if you do not have people coming to see you, this flyer can be attached to emails and other virtual communications. Participation in the census helps everyone.

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 328

What is the status of DACA? After the Supreme Court ruled against the Administration attempt to end the Deferred Childhood Arrival (DACA) program, one would expect that eligible individuals could initiate applications and renewals of registration. However, the Administration has refused to follow the Supreme Court order and issued a memo with the effects indicated at this link. Bishop Jamie Soto, Chair of the Board at the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc., strongly criticized the announced policy calling it “irresponsible and recalcitrant” in the midst of a pandemic since “DHS is returning to the same callous posture, against which the court has already decided.”

Human trafficking. Calling human trafficking “an open wound on the body of contemporary society,” Pope Francis offered thanks to all those who work in opposition to the commodification of the human person. Bishop Mario E. Dorsonville, chair of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Migration, called for prayers for those trafficked and for education so that all people see the horror of human trafficking which is an affront to the dignity of human persons.

Census workers are coming. Beginning, Saturday, August 1, census workers will be coming to homes, which have not completed census forms. It is important that residents of the United States (including lawful permanent residents, students and the undocumented) be included because the census numbers will be used in apportioning congressional and state legislative districts as well as many government benefits and grants. How do you know that the person at your door is a legitimate census worker? See this link to identify the census worker.

ICYMI – Keep up to date on changing immigration issues. Justice for Immigrants provides webinars, action alerts and more. Go to http://justiceforimmigrants.org and fill out the form at the bottom of any page today!

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 327

The Administration must re-start acceptance of DACA applications! The Supreme Court’s decision holding that the Administration did not act lawfully in trying to close the DACA program is only a temporary reprieve for DREAMERS because there are ways for the Administration to end the program. Nonetheless, until the Administration uses the proper procedures, the program must process applications and renewals. The Administration has tried to delay but has been ordered by the courts to take action immediately. See a discussion. Anyone who has been turned away should continue to insist on filing applications and renewals.

Less than a week until World Day Against Trafficking. Justice For Immigrants is offering a webinar next Thursday, July 30, to explore the human trafficking that plagues the world and especially affects vulnerable migrating people. Register today.

ICYMI — How to integrate immigrants into your community. Catholic Legal Immigration Network “believes that the most successful integration initiatives are local and seek input, buy-in and participation from a wide range of groups, individuals and institutions of both the receiving and newcomer community. This white paper will guide your organization through this process to help you design, implement, evaluate and reassess your integration initiatives while demonstrating how to actively promote integration in your community.”

Keep up to date on changing immigration issues. Justice for Immigrants provides webinars, action alerts and more. Go to http://justiceforimmigrants.org and fill out the form at the bottom of any page today!

Always seek qualified assistance. Unfortunately, there are scammers who want to take advantage of people in trouble. Immigration law is complex. Whenever legal help is needed, avoid notarios or even lawyers who are not experienced in immigration law. Catholic Legal Immigration Network has resources to identify dangers.

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 326

Learn more about human trafficking. Justice for Immigrants is supporting World Day Against Trafficking in Persons by offering a webinar about local and national actions, Thursday, July 30, at 1 p.m. Click here to register for the webinar. It will be time well spent as you continue to stay at home as much as possible.

Teaching children at home? Many parents will be teaching children at home in the near future and principles of civic participation are important for all to understand. Consider using these resources for classroom teachers, designed by Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC), available to all. As an important element for citizen education, CLINIC teaches the dignity of every human being.

Federal immigration requirements are difficult to understand. Yes, they are difficult to understand so it is important to seek advice from qualified legal representatives when questions arise. In addition to supporting non-profit legal services, such as those offered by Catholic Charities Atlanta Legal Services, Catholic Legal Immigration Network advocates for changes to those regulations. Very few people outside government may pay attention, but rules affect real people, such as asylum seekers. See for example a 101 page set of comments drafted and submitted by CLINIC attorneys to help those seeking asylum in the United States. Asylum is important. Over 79,000 comments were submitted.

COVID-19 affects everyone. Take a look at the #COVID19 resource page on the Justice for Immigrants’ website today. They continually update their health, prayer and government resources. As you pray for those exposed to the coronavirus, especially remember those in immigration detention and in prisons where many (staff, detainees and prisoners) are testing positive.

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 325

Welcome Bishop-elect Stephen Parkes to the State of Georgia, the Diocese of Savannah and the Georgia Catholic Conference. The bishops of Georgia constitute the Georgia Catholic Conference and we look forward to assisting Bishop-elect Parkes in his service to the people of south Georgia.

Less than a week to have your voice heard. Wednesday, July 15, is the deadline for public comments on the administration’s banning immigrants and visa seekers from entering the U.S. It is not just about protection against COVID-19. See an easy to use template for sending an email.

The DACA saga is not over. Although the Supreme Court would not approve the administration’s attempt to end the DACA program, the court left open the possibility that the administration could rectify the procedure it used to issue the attempted closure of the program. The administration has announced its intent to issue a new order that may comply with the supreme court’s order. The process will take time, but those who are eligible for DACA registration or renewal, should contact a qualified attorney to seek registration or renewal.

Pope Francis and Lampedusa. Pope Francis’ first trip outside Rome after his election was to Lampedusa, an arrival point for immigrants from Africa. The Holy Father has continued to demonstrate his concern for migrating people throughout his pontificate. He recently celebrated Mass remembering the seventh anniversary of that trip and continued his advocacy focusing on the humanity of all immigrants and refugees.  Ad multos annos, Pope Francis.

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 324

Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Litany of Loreto). Showing again his closeness and concern for migrating people, Pope Francis asked that the traditional Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, also known as the Litany of Loreto, have three added invocations seeking Mary’s intercession under the titles “Mother of mercy,” “Mother of hope” and “Solace of migrants.”

How to integrate immigrants into your community. The Catholic Legal Immigration Network “believes that the most successful integration initiatives are local and seek input, buy-in and participation from a wide range of groups, individuals and institutions of both the receiving and newcomer community. This white paper will guide your organization through this process to help you design, implement, evaluate and reassess your integration initiatives while demonstrating how to actively promote integration in your community.”

Asylum seekers (a continuing story).  El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz crossed the border to Ciudad Juárez where he lamented his expectation that the “fundamental right to asylum here at the border really is effectively over.” Based on the current Administration policy of keeping asylum seekers in camps in Mexico as well as the recent Supreme Court decision denying court review of border patrol agent decisions regarding asylum seekers, the United States will no longer be open to persecuted refugees seeking asylum.

ICYMI – COVID-19 affects us all. Keep up to date with the latest information on testing and protection as it affects everyone, including migrant and refugee populations. Justice for Immigrants provides resources.

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 323

Supreme Court denies asylum seekers right to court review. In a 7-2 decision, the United States Supreme Court ruled this week that asylum seekers, including those detained near the United States border, have no right to court review if they fail an initial asylum screening by federal officials. Those seekers may be immediately deported. Catholic immigration advocates decried the decision.

Urge senators to help Dreamers. While the Supreme Court preserved the Deferred Action Childhood Arrival (DACA) program for the time being, a permanent solution for these young people is necessary. The United States House of Representatives has adopted legislation to allow a path to citizenship, but the Senate has taken no action. You can have your voice heard by joining the Justice for Immigrants campaign urging the Senate to act. Furloughs for USCIS employees will hurt those seeking citizenship or other status changes. Thousands of homeland security employees who oversee the nation’s citizenship and visa process will be getting furlough notices unless Congress comes through with the emergency funding sought by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Visa and citizenship applications will be delayed. The Chair of the USCCB Committee on Migration, Bishop Mario Dorsonville, has outlined in detail what is needed to continue the visa and citizenship processing work of USCIS.

Immigration issues change rapidly, stay up to date. Head to http://justiceforimmigrants.org and scroll to the bottom of any page. You will find a form to fill out and then, you will get the updates!

ICYM – Supreme Court preserves DACA, for the time being. The United States Supreme Court ruled on Thursday, June 18, that the Trump Administration had acted unlawfully in the way it attempted to terminate the DACA program. Hence, DACA remains in effect; however, procedurally the Administration can try to rectify its mistakes and try to properly end the program. The ramifications of this decision are not yet completely known but we continue to follow developments. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Justice for Immigrants and many Catholic leaders, including Archbishop Gregory J. Hartmayer, welcomed the decision while encouraging the president and the Congress to work for a comprehensive solution for all needing a path to citizenship.

ICYMI – COVID-19 affects us all. Keep up to date with the latest information on testing and protection as it affects everyone, including migrant and refugee populations. Justice for Immigrants provides resources.


Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 322

Supreme Court preserves DACA – for the time being. The United States Supreme Court ruled on Thursday, June 18, that the Trump Administration had acted unlawfully in the way it attempted to terminate the DACA program. Hence, DACA remains in effect; however, procedurally the Administration can try to rectify its mistakes and try to properly end the program. The ramifications of this decision are not yet completely known but we continue to follow developments. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops , Catholic Legal Immigration Network , Justice for Immigrants and many Catholic leaders, including Archbishop Gregory J. Hartmayer, welcomed the decision while encouraging the president and the Congress to work for a comprehensive solution for all needing a path to citizenship.

ICYMI – COVID-19 affects us all. Keep up to date with the latest information on testing and protection as it affects everyone, including migrant and refugee populations. Justice for Immigrants provides resources.

Human trafficking – Georgia General Assembly. As the Archdiocese of Atlanta focuses on human trafficking and all its horror during the month of June, the Georgia General Assembly is taking some positive actions to help reduce labor and sex trafficking in Georgia. House Bill 823 provide for a lifetime disqualification from operating a commercial motor vehicle by persons convicted of trafficking other persons for labor or sexual servitude while using a commercial motor vehicle.

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 321

Pope Francis. “We cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every human life.” https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2020-06/pope-francis-usa-george-floyd-protests-no-racism-violence.html.  See a local view on the same issue here.

Young Latino leader gathering. Georgetown University and the Archdiocese of Washington sponsored a gathering for young Latino Catholics to discuss key issues and personal stories about faith and public life from distinguished Latinos and other leaders. Part of Georgetown’s Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life, the gathering brought together distinguished speakers for discussion of racism and the effect of COVID-19 on Latino and other communities. Read the key presentations and other resources here.

The 2020 Census is not over and participation is still necessary. As the census continues, it is important that all residents of the United States on April 1 be counted, without regard to citizenship or legal status. Justice for Immigrants shares information on immigrant participation here.

COVID-19 affects us all. Keep up to date with the latest information on testing and protection as it affects everyone, including migrant and refugee populations. Justice for Immigrants provides resources.

Human Trafficking. As the Archdiocese of Atlanta focuses on human trafficking and all its horror during the month of June, take the opportunity to study the new human trafficking resources that Justice for Immigrants continues to develop.

ICYMI – Pray the rosary for migrant vulnerable populations. Justice for Immigrants proposes five different sets of rosary meditations for migrant vulnerable populations. In addition, the Archdiocese of Atlanta Justice and Peace Ministries has designated June as Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Pray and learn from the information availab

Comprehensive Immigration Report No. 320

Prepare for World Refugee Day. World Refugee Day is coming on Saturday, June 20. Learn the difference between refugees and immigrants, find prayers for refugees, learn accurate facts and other information that will increase your understanding of an important human rights issue. See this Justice for Immigrants Toolkit.

Immigration and racism are related. Migrants face many obstacles as they seek freedom from oppression and racial discrimination, covert and otherwise. Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC) demonstrated the connection in its recent statement standing against racism.

Immigration lawyers. In the best of times, the practice of immigration law is complex and difficult. In today’s world, the COVID-19 pandemic, sheltering in place and the virus of racism reflected in the death of George Floyd, not to mention the increasingly restrictive policies of the federal administration, make the representation of immigrants and refugees even more challenging. Anna Gallagher, Executive Director of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC) described some of those challenges at the southern border of the United States and the ways CLINIC and affiliated agencies are responding.

Inspiration at the border. For inspiration, see Sister Norma Pimentel’s TED talk on Restoring Human Dignity at the Border.

ICYMI – Pray the rosary for migrant vulnerable populations. Justice for Immigrants proposes five different sets of rosary meditations for migrant vulnerable populations. In addition, the Archdiocese of Atlanta Justice and Peace Ministries has designated June as Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Pray and learn from the information available here.

ICYMI – Keep up to date. Justice for Immigrants offers current information delivered to your inbox. Sign up for their alerts today. It is simple. Go to http://justiceforimmigrants.org and scroll to the bottom of any page, then fill out the form. You will get action alerts, webinar updates and more!