Immigration News Resources

ICE’s COVID-19 Death Toll Might Be Higher Than It Claims

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) continues to mismanage the spread of the coronavirus in its facilities nationwide—and the consequences might be far more deadly than the agency wants to admit. As of October 22, ICE confirmed a total of 6,743 cases of COVID-19 diagnosed across 99 facilities since the pandemic began in March. 661 […]

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Three New Lawsuits Challenge Trump’s H-1B Worker Restrictions

Three new lawsuits have been filed challenging the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new rules impacting the H-1B visa category, with one also challenging the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) new H-1B rule. The complaints argue that the new H-1B rules will make it near impossible for many U.S. businesses to hire foreign workers—particularly those in […]

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Remote Pro Bono Work in the Midst of a Pandemic

Jacqueline Shi, AILA member and member of the AILA National Pro Bono Committee, shares how attorneys continue to provide pro bono services to vulnerable immigrant communities during the pandemic by using technology and innovation.

Naturalization Fees: A Poll Tax Hidden in Plain Sight

The application fee to apply for U.S. citizenship rose from $640 to $1170 on October 2. This is not the first time U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has raised the naturalization application fee. But the increase has never been this high—a staggering 82%. The Center for American Progress found in a 2014 study that […]

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How Proposed Changes to ‘Duration of Status’ Rules Will Impact Students and Exchange Visitors

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has published a proposed rule that will make it more difficult for individuals applying for admission in a J-1 exchange visitor or F-1 student visa category to complete their programs, apply for extensions, and even secure these opportunities in the first place. Exchange visitors are approved non-immigrants that participate […]

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The Senate Reveals CBP Violated the Law by Rounding Up Migrants — In Guatemala

As the Trump administration cracked down on migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border, it has often invoked the concept of “national sovereignty” to justify drastic policy changes. But a new Senate report reveals that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) itself violated the sovereignty of another nation. Agents deployed to Guatemala in January in partnership with […]

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Border Patrol is Going After Humanitarian Aid in the Arizona Desert—Again

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) launched another military-style raid on a humanitarian aid station in the Arizona desert, close to the U.S.-Mexico border. On October 5, Border Patrol agents and CBP’s para-military arm Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC) descended on the aid camp. They charged in with assault rifles, an armored vehicle, ATVs, a […]

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ICE Deported Cameroonian Immigrants Despite Protests and Congressional Intervention

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deported a flight of approximately 100 African asylum seekers to their home countries, where they could face immediate arrest and death. Many of the Cameroonian and Congolese immigrants had protested their detention and spoken out about abuses in U.S. custody. ICE went forward with the deportations on October 13 […]

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Department of Justice Eliminates Diversity and Inclusion Training for All Immigration Judges

At a time when tensions over race in the United States are high, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced in an October 8 memo that it will cancel all diversity and inclusion trainings for its staff of over 115,000 people. The decision could have a particularly devastating impact on the U.S. immigration court system. […]

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Voting Feels Different This Year but is More Important than Ever

AILA Board of Governors member Ally Bolour shares his personal story of naturalization and why he feels the obligation to vote and encourage others to vote as well, including his 98-year-old father who will vote for the first time ever!

Indigenous People Face Persistent Language Access Challenges in Immigration Detention

The effort to permanently replace Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples’ Day signifies a growing movement to honor the resilience and history of indigenous communities. The day presents an opportunity to learn more about the native communities who were here long before the violent arrival of Christopher Columbus. It is also a chance to reflect on […]

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Restrictions on Foreign Workers Will Hurt America’s Recovery From COVID-19

The Trump administration issued two rules October 8 that, if not overturned, will further restrict legal immigration. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued the first rule, which only applies to H-1B workers. This rule further limits an employer’s ability to demonstrate that its job is in a “specialty occupation.” The other rule—issued by the […]

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USCIS’ Changes to ‘Affidavit of Support’ Make It Harder for Americans to Sponsor Immigrant Family Members

The Department of Homeland Security has proposed a rule that would make it much more difficult for U.S. citizens and legal immigrants—especially those experiencing financial hardship—to sponsor family members for green cards. If the rule goes into effect, the process of family-based immigration will become even more cumbersome and restrictive. The proposed rule—published in the […]

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Congress Expands Premium Processing to Help Cash-Strapped USCIS

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) suffered a budget crisis partially of its own doing and partially due to the coronavirus pandemic in 2020. Although the agency did not need to go through with planned furloughs, Congress has nevertheless acted to provide the agency with a new way to raise money through the expansion of […]

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Bending the Curve – Getting Out the New Citizen Vote

AILA President Jennifer Minear shares how she is working to ensure her new citizen clients are ready to vote, writing "I'm not telling my clients how to vote, but I am making darn sure they remember the capacity they have to reshape their future, to decide who will have the power...to effect change."

Immigrants Detained in California Win the Right to Sue Private Prison Companies

The multibillion-dollar private prison industry that operates immigration detention facilities—forcibly detaining tens of thousands of men, women and children—has come increasingly under fire in past weeks. California Governor Gavin Newson signed a bill allowing detained immigrants to sue private prison companies for failing to meet minimum standards of care outlined in the facilities’ contracts in […]

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Federal Judge Limits Trump Administration’s Foreign Worker Ban

On October 1, a federal judge ordered the Trump administration to stop enforcing parts of a presidential proclamation that banned many foreign workers from entering the United States. The court found that the president likely did not have the authority to issue the ban. Who does the ruling impact? The decision, in National Association of […]

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This Immigration Enforcement Agency Wants To Destroy Records on Abuses by Its Own Agents

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) plans to destroy thousands of records documenting abuse and misconduct by its agents. The agency has requested that the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) approve the destruction of complaints–but over 100 organizations opposed this decision citing mounting evidence of CBP lack of accountability. Under the Federal Records Act, […]

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How Trump’s COVID-19 Immigration Ban Has Impacted Family-Based Immigration

The Trump administration is successfully using the COVID-19 pandemic as a pretext to alter the U.S. system of legal immigration. New government data makes clear that these changes will significantly increase employment-based immigration at the expense of people in the family categories—and without any involvement by Congress. On March 20, the administration suspended routine visa […]

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Federal Court Halts Massive USCIS Fee Increases for Immigration Applications

A federal court halted a new rule that would have increased fees for immigration applications on September 29. The court explained that the rule, announced by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in August, is likely unlawful. Before the court issued its ruling, USCIS planned to implement the rule in early October. The rule would […]

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