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January 2019 Archives

Lawsuits challenge government approach to immigrant children

Children who are held in immigration detention in Florida and across the country may face serious harm to their health and well-being. Over 10,000 of them are detained in different shelters nationwide, and several lawsuits say that the system is being used to punish children and their families and push them toward deportation. A federal mandate requires that children detained by immigration authorities be held in the least restrictive setting available, but many remain in government facilities despite having relatives in the United States who could care for them.

Immigration backlog likely to increase during shutdown

A report issued on Jan. 14 said that over 40,000 immigration cases were canceled because of the government shutdown. This estimate is based on the number of hearings that had been scheduled in Florida immigration courts and others throughout the country. The figure was difficult to verify because both judges and employees of the Executive Office for Immigration Review had been furloughed because of the shutdown.

Immigration court backlog increases with government shutdown

The immigration system, with courts located in Florida and throughout the United States, is notorious for extensive backlogs. Since the government shutdown that began in late 2018 started, the problem has only become worse. Court backlogs are growing by approximately 20,000 cases per week, and more than 40,000 hearings have been cancelled according to the Transaction Records Access Clearinghouse.

Utilizing immigrant and non-immigrant visas

Many employers find that immigrant workers are the ideal candidates for their work, but utilizing these workers is not always an easy process. Depending on the field of work and the workers available to fill a position, obtaining the proper work visas and complying with immigration and labor laws can feel like assembling a puzzle without all the pieces.

USCIS changes asylum process and leaves thousands in limbo

New asylum seekers in Florida might have their cases heard by immigration authorities before people who have been waiting for years. A policy change by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services known as "last in, first out" was meant to reduce the backlog of asylum cases, but the case log has grown by 10,000 new applications since the the agency initiated the new approach. The switching of priorities has left many people who have already been in the country for years unable to make plans for the future because they might be deported eventually.

New U.S.-Mexico asylum plan confuses many

In December 2018, the United States and Mexico announced a new immigration plan that will allow many asylum seekers to stay in Mexico until their immigration cases are heard by a judge. However, few details have been released about the plan, leaving immigration officials in Florida and elsewhere confused about how to proceed.

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