Why Should Congress Support the Refugee Protection Act of 2016?

Why Should Congress Support the Refugee Protection Act of 2016? A Syrian refugee reacts as he waits behind border fences to cross into Turkey at Akcakale border gate in Sanliurfa province, Turkey, June 15, 2015. Photo by Umit Bektas/Reuters “We live in the age of the refugee, the age of the exile.” Ariel Dorfman (Argentine-Chilean playwright, academic and human rights activist) By Satsita Muradova If someone asked me what was the most difficult decision I have made in my lifetime, I would respond – seeking asylum in the United States.

What is going on with Executive Action?

What is going on with Executive Action? It has been a whirlwind month for immigration as this country continues on its indecisive course on immigration law and policy.  We try to make sense of the goings-on: What is the status of Judge Hanen’s ruling? As you recall, on February 16, 2015, Judge Andrew Hanen of the U.S. District Court of Brownsville, Texas issued a nationwide injunction stopping the Obama administration from implementing executive action reforms, DAPA and expanded DACA

GUEST BLOG: Special Immigrant Juvenile Status: Maryland Closes Gap with Federal Law to Expand Courts’ Jurisdiction. By Michelle Mendez

GUEST BLOG: Special Immigrant Juvenile Status:  Maryland Closes Gap with Federal Law to Expand Courts’ Jurisdiction. By Michelle Mendez This blog post was written by FOBR Michelle Mendez, Senior Managing Attorney at Immigrant Legal Service of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington.   On April 8, 2014, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley signed into law Chapter 96, which, through a small, technical fix that closes a gap between state and federal law, expands the jurisdiction of an equity court to include custody or guardianship of an immigrant child pursuant to a motion for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) factual findings.

FOBR Olsi Vrapi Tries to Represent a Child in Artesia, New Mexico

FOBR Olsi Vrapi Tries to Represent a Child in Artesia, New Mexico Olsi Vrapi is a Friend of Benach Collopy who practices in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  He recently found himself on the front line of the battle of how to handle the major influx of refugee children at the Southern Border.  In this chilling blogpost entitled “The Artesia Experience,” Olsi describes his experience visiting his client in the new facility in Artesia, New Mexico where the government is detaining Central American children and families. 

America’s Leaders Are Failing the Children

Our country is facing one of its greatest moral challenges in years: how will we treat the migrant children fleeing violence in Central America and seeking refuge within our borders? I know how I want us to treat them. Fairly, humanely, and within the parameters of the anti-trafficking law passed by bipartisan consensus in 2008 and signed by then-President George W. Bush. Under the TVPRA of 2008, a child apprehended by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) undergoes initial processing and screening to see if he or she is an unaccompanied child (UAC) from a non-contiguous country, such as El Salvador, Honduras, or Guatemala.

Nine Ways Obama Could Make Immigration Law Better Without Bothering to Wake Congress

Nine Ways Obama Could Make Immigration Law Better Without Bothering to Wake Congress The House of Representatives passed the Enforce Act yesterday.  This piece of legislation, which is never going to become law, provides a cause of action to Members of Congress to sue the President for failure to enforce the laws as they see fit.  The Enforce Act is aimed squarely at the President’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which has given hope to so many young undocumented immigrants. 

Lifted Lamp’s Top Ten Blog Posts for 2013 & Poll for Topics for 2014

Lifted Lamp's Top Ten Blog Posts for 2013 & Poll for Topics for 2014 Looking back on what turned out to be a disappointing 2013 for the lack of progress on meaningful immigration reform and on the continuing pace of removals, we have tried to figure out what articles and stories most appealed to our readers.  Turns out that our readers were not as interested in the minute-by-minute accounts of progress, but rather came to Lifted Lamp for information about developments in the law that had a real impact upon their lives. 

Nelson Mandela and the Abuse of the “Terrorist” Designation

Nelson Mandela and the Abuse of the "Terrorist" Designation As accolades from world leaders pour in to remember Nelson Mandela, it is hard to recall that for decades, much of the world accepted the apartheid South African government’s designation of Mandela as a terrorist.  It would be tempting to write that designation off as a relic of the Cold War, unfit for these modern times.  Yet, it was not until 2008 when Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress were removed from the U.S.

Does the President Have the Power to Stop All/Most Removals?

Does the President Have the Power to Stop All/Most Removals? As official Washington administers last rites to immigration reform for 2013 only to have it pop up again with a barely detectable pulse, undocumented immigrants and their allies continue to press the President to use his power as the executive to suspend removals.  Marches, sit-ins, hunger strikes, and social media combat for #notonemore deportation have reached a fever pitch as the House seems to be putting the last nail in the coffin for the comprehensive immigration reform bill passed by the Senate in June. 

Congratulations to the National Center for Transgender Equality: Let’s Hope ENDA Does Better than CIR!

Congratulations to the National Center for Transgender Equality: Let's Hope ENDA Does Better than CIR! Last night, Jen Cook and I went to the National Council for Transgender Equality’s  (NCTE) 10th Anniversary event.  The evening was themed “Our Moment,” reflecting the organization’s intention to build upon the successes of the gay rights movement in the past year, including the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the Windsor decision, and the many states that have enacted gay marriage.  In fact, even as the party went on, the festivities were interrupted to announce that Hawaii became the 16th state to allow for gay marriage