The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of The Immigration Reform Billby Karl W Hoffman on Jun. 29, 2013, under Uncategorized
The border security and immigration debacle gets new life and lots of new money.
As two expensive wars near their close some of the largest military contractors head to the buffet table to stock up on billions of dollars in federal funds that will be diverted to border security. With a trade show of new technology and equipment developed for overseas conflict and surveillance becoming available at home new contracts will certainly be a prize. Politicians in bed with government contractors are swarming to the floor with bills to increase border security.
Military Contracts And Political Donations are A Cycle That Must Be Protected, by Karl W Hoffman June 07, 2013
The Break Down of The Senate Immigration Reform Bill (S. 744): (Over 1,000 pages)
Road to Citizen Ship
• Provides a road to citizenship for many of the 11 million without lawful status.
• Provides an expedited road for Dreamers who entered the U.S. before 16, graduated from high school (or received a GED) in the U.S., and attended at least 2 years of college or served 4 years in the military. After 5 years in provisional status, Dreamers may apply for adjustment to lawful permanent resident (LPR) status and citizenship at the same time.
• Provides an expedited road for agricultural workers to adjust to LPR status.
• No longer subjects spouses and children of LPRs to arbitrary visa caps.
• Allows spouses and children to join “STEM” (science, technology, engineering, and math) and other professional visa-holders.
• Creates W nonimmigrant visas for low- skilled workers during labor shortages and allows them to also apply for LPR status. Spouses can join and receive work authorization.
• Limits disclosure of information on applications, except in some narrow circumstances for criminal prosecutions or investigations.
• The road to citizenship is conditional and at least 13 years long for most people (10 years of registered provisional immigrant (RPI) status and 3 years of LPR status).
• An applicant must have arrived in the U.S. on or before Dec. 31, 2011. This will exclude recent arrivals.
• Includes strict conditions for RPI status: settlement of assessed federal tax liability; a record clean of certain criminal offenses; no LPR, Ashlee, refugee, or lawful nonimmigrant status as of April 16, 2013.
• Requires proof of regular employment (with no gap longer than 60 days) for retaining status.
• Fines/penalties include $1,000 at RPI application and $1,000 when applying for a green card. Application fees are yet to be determined.
• Requires English-as-a-second-language courses, whose availability is limited.
• Conditions and requirements would likely exclude 3 million of the 11 million undocumented immigrants from gaining legal status.
Access to Safety Net & Educational Opportunities
• Restores Medicaid eligibility to people who enter the U.S. under the Compact of Freely Associated States (COFA), people from the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.
• Provides access to federal public housing assistance for “qualified” immigrant survivors of domestic violence.
• Provides access to federal work-study and federal student loans for Dreamers and blue-card holders, although they remain ineligible for federal Pell grants until they adjust to lawful permanent resident (LPR) status.
• People granted provisional status (RPI, blue card, and V visas) are denied access to federal means- tested benefits, including Medicaid and food assistance. These people are subject to a 5-year bar once they gain LPR status, so they are denied access to these programs for 15 years.
• People in provisional status are barred from accessing subsidies that make private health insurance more affordable under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
• B (tourist and business) and F (student) nonimmigrant visa holders are categorically excluded from ACA programs.
• People granted RPI status and those who overstayed a nonimmigrant visa may not claim Social Security credit for any quarter of coverage earned between 2004 and 2014 in which they were not authorized to work.
• Requires all employers to use the federal government’s EEVS (E-Verify) to verify the employment eligibility of newly hired employees, a process that would be phased in based on employer size.
• Creates new, stringent civil, and criminal penalties for acts such as misuse of a passport, all of which would affect immigration and removal statuses.
• Electronic employment eligibility verification does not prevent abusive employers from gaming the system and exploiting workers.
• Provides due process and worker protections for U.S. citizens and other work-authorized people who are subject to an error in the electronic employment eligibility verification system (EEVS).
• Remedies the Supreme Court decision in Hoffman Plastics v. NLRB by specifying that neither back pay nor other damages (except any reinstatement remedy prohibited under federal law) shall be denied to a person based on his or her immigration status.
• Provides protections for immigrant workers who are wrongfully terminated or who experience significant workplace abuse.
• Allows W (worker) visa holders to switch to other registered employers.
• Cost of border enforcement is $46 billion amidst significant federal budget cuts.
• The “surge” militarizes the border and threatens the health and safety of residents.
• Seeks to apprehend 9 out of every 10 immigrants who try to enter without inspection along the southern border.
• Authorizes CBP to search without a warrant 100 miles from the southern border, compared to 25 miles on the northern border.
• Focuses funding on southern border fencing and agents instead of addressing requests from local leaders concerning ports of entry. • Implements use-of-force policies and trainings for Border Patrol.
• Includes complaint procedures for violations of civil and human rights.
• U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and other federal law enforcement officials are subject to racial-profiling prohibitions.
Access to Justice
• Creates a review system in which a person denied registered provisional immigrant (RPI) status or facing revocation of RPI status would have 90 days to appeal the ruling. There would be a stay of removal pending appeal.
• Allows for judicial review of denied RPI applications or revocations of RPI status in federal district courts.
• Provides for some limited reforms to detention, including timely custody and bond determinations, due process on removal orders, increased inspection of detention facilities, and expanded use of alternatives to detention.
• Provides access to appointed counsel in removal proceedings for unaccompanied children, people with mental disabilities, and other vulnerable people.
• Does not address state and local laws and policies that result in profiling and does not discourage or preempt localities from enacting future laws.
• Expands the overly broad immigration- related definition of “aggravated felony” to include convictions of 3 DUIs, including misdemeanors. People with aggravated felonies face almost automatic deportation. They may not apply for waivers from deportation or present positive factors such as rehabilitation, family ties, etc.
• Makes immigrants, including green- card holders, inadmissible and deportable for committing DUIs, domestic violence offenses, and gang membership. These overly broad categories sweep up domestic violence survivors and people who have never been part of a gang and will result in more people being permanently exiled from the U.S.
Karl W Hoffman
Documentary Film Producer
Watch the complete documentary (96min) ”Living on the Border”
(Copyright 2013 Karl W Hoffman / Skull Creek Media. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
I’m a photographer and artists with no claims to be a writer. The TC is the voice of the people so spelling and grammar corrections are gracefully accepted but don’t blame me altogether, sometimes its Spell Check.