Thanks to our coalition partners, League of Women Voters NC, the following is an excellent source of information on the Immigration Issue. While AAUW has not focused on this (we can’t be everywhere and effective) it is an issue that will be discussed at length in the 2008 federal elections. This is called Public Policy Issues 101. Mary
The following is from the November, 2007 issue of the newsletter of the League of Women Voters of Wake County. Find that (as a PDF with clickable links) at www.lwvwake.org. There’s a reference to their successful Running & Winning program — for more about that, see www.nccwps.org/runwin/.
Immigration SimplifiedAt the [LWV Wake County] fall luncheon on October 26, Jorgelina Araneda, an immigration attorney with 16 years experience, commended the LWV for undertaking a comprehensive study and briefed the group on the complexity of the immigration issues. So here is a recap of the important points that she made.
She explained that there are three reasons an immigrant can be considered illegal:
1. The person entered the U.S. without a visa from a country from which a visa is required.
2. The person has overstayed a legally issued visa.
3. The person is subject to deportation/removal proceedings.
H1B visas are issued for professionals and H2B visas are issued for non-professional workers (these cannot be extended generally nor can the employer be changed). The numbers issued of both types are capped. There was actually a lottery this past year for the October 1 H1B visas.
Another means for remaining in the U.S. is through asylum (refugee from a country where the individual is endangered). Asylum is usually denied by Immigration Judges.
Cases are heard before an immigration judge in an administrative court. These are civil proceedings.
An individual married to a U.S. citizen or someone sponsored by a business can usually stay, but if a deportation order is issued, which is a civil order, and the person does not leave, he/she can be arrested.
It is currently estimated that there are between 12 and 20 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S.
The Social Security Administration is sending no match letters to businesses and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is raiding establishments and arresting not only adults but also children.
Immigration laws are federal laws and as such we need to consider:
• Stopping more undocumented immigrants at the border
• Deciding what to do about those who are already here
• Determining future policy
In addition to the publications listed on the LWVUS Web site, the following references are being included for the Running & Winning student binders:
“Can a Guest Worker Program Work,” TIME Magazine, May 24, 2007.
Current Issues of Immigration, 2007, Constitutional Rights Foundation Web site: www.crf-usa.org.
“Comprehensive Immigration Reform,” www.whitehouse.gov/infocus/immigration/.
“The Economic Impact of the Hispanic Population on the State of North Carolina”,
John D. Kasandra and James H. Johnson, Jr., Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina, 2006, www.kenan-flagler.unc.edu/ki/reports/2006_HispanicStudy/.
“The Framing of Immigration,” George Lakoff and Sam Ferguson, The Rockridge Institute, 2006, www.rockridgeinstitute.org/.
“Immigration Policy,” League of Women Voters Web site: www.lwv.org.
“Immigration: The Case for Amnesty,” TIME Magazine, June 7, 2007.
Immigration Reports & Studies, American Immigration Lawyers Association Web site: www.aila.org.
Pew Hispanic Center: Research and Surveys on the U.S. Hispanic Population, pewhispanic.org/.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis.