Archive for July, 2005

The Cost of Mass Deportations

July 26, 2005

The Center for American Progress released a study finding that the costs of deporting all undocumented people in the U.S. could be at least $206 billion over five years ($41.2 billion annually), and as high as $230 billion or more. “Spending $41.2 billion annually would exceed the entire budget of the Department of Homeland Security for FY 2006 ($34.2 billion) and more than double the annual cost of military operations in Afghanistan ($16.8 billion).”


July 26, 2005

White House strangely silent on immigration reform. It withdrew Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff and Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao’s testimony from today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on immigration reform.


July 26, 2005

Harvard study finds that immigrants are not a drain on America’s healthcare system.

San Diego Legal Observers Press Release

July 22, 2005

For Immediate Release Contact: Marisela Chevez, ACLU
Thursday, July 21, 2005 (619) 232-2121 ext 26


(San Diego) A Minuteman splinter group that brought a small number of volunteers to Campo, California, has yet to intercept any migrants, say lawyers who have joined forces to monitor the would-be vigilantes, many of whom are armed. From all reports, however, the past week was just a preview; Jim Chase’s group has summoned reinforcements and two other groups have announced that they, too, will patrol the California/ Mexico border over the next couple of months and probably in much larger numbers.

Predictably, the beginning of the patrols drew protesters. “The confrontations between the so-called California Minutemen and protesters that marked the past week serves to underscore the fact that immigration issues generate a lot of heat and that border enforcement should be left to professional law enforcement,” says Sylvia Baiz from San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, one of the legal observer coalition members. “More heat is the last thing we need when tempers are already frayed by record-breaking temperatures in the Campo area.”

Not to be confused with the protesters, the mission of the legal observers is neither to confront nor engage the Minutemen, but to monitor them so as to deter potential abuses of the migrants, such as assaults and unlawful arrests. The legal observers are sponsored by a coalition formed by the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, the American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego & Imperial Counties and the local chapters of the National Lawyers Guild, and the Association of Immigration Law Attorneys.

The legal observers wear distinctive yellow T-shirts and are equipped with binoculars and video cameras. Over the past week, the coalition has gone about the business of training observers, testing the range of its communications equipment and locating the lookout posts of the Minutemen. The coalition’s coordinator in Campo is Juan Gallegos. While in the field he can be reached by calling the following cell phone number: (619) 818-6074. Messages can also be left for him on the cell phone or at the ACLU office in San Diego: 619-232-2121, extension 28.


July 22, 2005

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Thomas v. Gonzales, No. 02-71656 (9th Cir. Jun. 3, 2005), found that a family may constitute a social group for the purposes of the refugee statutes.

H1-B Petitions

July 22, 2005

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service announced that 8,069 H-1B Petitions have been counted against FY 2005 Cap.


July 22, 2005

From the Miami Herald: “Members of Havana Night Club, the show that drew headlines when its members defected en masse last year from Cuba and settled in Las Vegas, will walk into a government office today to apply for something many Americans take for security cards”

Honduran and Nicaraguan TPS

July 10, 2005

An extension of the validity of Employement Authorization Documents was issued to Honduran and Nicaraguan Temporary Protective Status beneficiaries for an additional 90 days, from July 5, 2005 to October 5, 2005 (70 Fed. Reg. 39325, 7/7/05).

USCIS and ICE News

July 10, 2005

USCIS Director Eduardo Aguirre resigned to become Ambassador to Spain. USCIS Chief Counsel Robert Divine will become the Acting Director of USCIS until a new Director is nominated and confirmed.

ICE Assistant Secretary Michael Garcia has been nominated to serve as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

Happy Fourth of July!

July 4, 2005

Hanna Rosin from the Washington Post describers her parents exodus from Isreal to the U.S. in her essay, Early Americans.