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Staten Island Immigration & Naturalization Law Blog

Changes to U.S. immigration law may raise public health concerns

People living in New York without the proper documentation may be struggling to keep up with recent changes in policy. U.S. immigration law is an ever-evolving entity, and some important changes may soon go into effect. Some of the changes make it more difficult for undocumented immigrants and their families to take advantage of public health care options. 

The current president wants to enact new laws that make it more difficult for some immigrants to qualify for most types of public assistance. One of these might include medical care. Now, some experts in the health care field warn that these new rules may lead to a health crisis. 

Immigration charges: 2-year-old facing deportation proceedings

This past summer was a particularly cruel one for New York. Hot, humid weather had everyone feeling a little weary. Even though October has arrived and the temperatures are breaking, the summer's hot button debate over immigration charges  and minor children continues to linger. 

A New York immigration judge recently found himself presiding over a case with a shocking defendant. A 2-year-old child was present, somehow expected to plead her case. Adults in the court room attempted to determine if the child spoke English or Spanish, but the child was so frightened she could merely nod. At 2, she surely could not even comprehend where she was or why she was there. 

Shocking revelations regarding immigration detention facilities

New York residents may be like most other Americans who find themselves confused about how the government is handling immigration issues. Many are aware that an immigrant without proper paperwork can face immigration detention. Though, to the untrained eye, it may seem as if immigrants held in detention are criminals, this sort of detention is actually a civil matter and does not indicate that an immigrant has committed a crime. 

Critics of immigration detention facilities are growing more concerned that the people inside these facilities are losing hope. Many struggle with being separated from their families, homes and communities. A recent tour of one such facility revealed that a number of detainees had attempted suicide and that guards did little to stop their attempts. 

New policies could affect those with permanent resident status

New York residents may find themselves confused by the latest round of changes to U.S. immigration law. The current administration has announced that, in an effort to ease the burden on public assistance systems, a person who is a permanent resident and relies on obtaining a green card to continue to live and work in the United States may have a tougher time obtaining public assistance. There are many people who support this change, as current policy requires green card applicants to prove they will not be a drain on the economy. 

Others stand opposed to the changes, saying that many people, regardless of citizenship status, rely on public assistance to provide supplemental food, financial support or housing assistance. Many fear that if they apply for these services now, they will not be able to obtain a green card. Though the government says that this should not affect people who already have a green card, many New York residents find themselves confused. 

Report shows growing need for food deportation defense

New York residents may be under the common misconception that only undocumented immigrants with a criminal record are subject to deportation. Many people remain unaware that this is not the case, and an immigrant may face deportation with no record of previous crime. The need for deportation defense is ever-growing, but many families may not know where to find help. 

A recent report gives examples of undocumented immigrants who were recently deported, despite not being found guilty of a crime. Many claim that they have lived in the U.S. for many years, have children born here and have paid taxes on their wages. After a person has been deported, the appeal process can take many years, making a return impossible. 

Changes to U.S. immigration law put judges on edge

As summer ends and the weather cools down across the state of New York, the controversy surrounding immigration is still heating up. U.S. immigration law is ever-changing, and even the courts are having trouble staying on pace. Recently, judges have begun to speak out about discouraging new procedures that have left them feeling overwhelmed. In most areas of law, judges are able to use their discretion to determine a timetable to best handle each individual case.

Due to a hefty backlog of immigration cases, judges have been asked to limit the time each case will take. Previously, a judge was allowed to postpone a hearing if a party or their legal representation requested more time to prepare. Especially in cases involving deportation, the federal government has become impatient, citing scenarios in which an undocumented immigrant facing deportation may be allowed to remain in the United States as he or she awaits the closure of a court case. Beginning Oct. 1, 2018, judges will now have to provide a specific reason for why a case may be delayed. 

Employment immigration troubles are affecting American economy

A recent census suggests that over 800 languages are spoken in the state of New York alone. Most people are used to encountering people of other cultures, many from other countries, in their daily travel. Several U.S. industries rely heavily on employment immigration, and many employers are complaining that a delay in the process of obtaining a work visa is harming their business. 

While certainly, many types of industry in the nation rely on some percentage of foreign workers, two major industries have already complained that they have empty positions that were slated to be filled by persons coming to the country under employment immigration policies. The hospitality industry, most notably hotels, reports that delays in visa approvals for qualified applicants has created a shortage of workers, and workers already employed in the United States are being overburdened to make up the difference. The medical industry also relies heavily on foreign workers, and many hospitals report a shortage of doctors. 

Those interested in employment immigration call for law changes

Some New York workers are hoping to see a change in state law that they feel will help their families. Many local farm workers, as well as workers in other industries, say their families have been affected negatively by employment immigration policies. Current state law does not provide the opportunity for undocumented immigrants to be eligible for a driver's license, no matter how long they have been living and working in the United States. 

One New York woman says that she and her husband have been in the United States for over a decade. They have three American-born children. They have been successful in obtaining employment on local farms and say they immigrated here to escape poverty in their home country. 

Minors facing immigration charges have great need for legal help

With all the recent news coverage concerning immigration and deportation issues, New York residents may feel as if they understand the issue. While the basic laws may seem cut and dry, people may not realize that, sometimes, children are left to face the might of the U.S. legal system alone. Unaccompanied minors are child immigrants who have made their way to the U.S. without their parents. If it is suspected that they are undocumented immigrants, they face the same immigration charges as adults and may be subject to deportation. 

New York has long been a place where immigrants travel to meet up with their American family members to have familiar faces close by as they attempt to acclimate to the language and the culture. Many unaccompanied minors traveled to the United States without their parents to escape violence, war and famine in their home countries. When these minors find themselves facing immigration charges for not having the proper documentation, it is up to them to find their own defense attorney. 

Father in need of deportation defense after unexpected arrest

New York residents may be among the millions of Americans who are confused by recent reports of immigrant deportation. U.S. immigration policy seems to change daily, and reports of people who have lived in the United States for many years and are now in need of deportation defense splash across morning headlines. Recently, a story broke about a father who was arrested by ICE in front of his family, who say that the man was not even the suspect ICE claimed to be looking for. 

Current U.S. immigration law states that immigrants who have a criminal history in the United States may now be subject to deportation. One New York man was arrested when ICE came to the family's home. Family members claim that the ICE officers first asked for someone with a name they did not recognize. The officers then asked a female family member who lived in the home, and when she gave her husband's name, he was arrested. 

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