The Facts About How Immigration Law Will Change
With emotions running high, it’s hard to sift through the noise and find the facts about Trump’s plan and how immigration law will change. Here we provide a clear-cut outline of the changes in immigration law under Donald Trump’s administration.
President Donald Trump seeks to fulfill his campaign trail promise to strengthen immigration law to protect the nation’s border with the Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States executive order as well as the Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States executive order. On February 21st, White House Spokesman Sean Spicer told the press that Homeland Security seeks undocumented immigrants who “pose a threat to our public safety or have committed a crime.”
Any undocumented immigrant charged or convicted of a criminal offense is at risk of deportation. The Obama administration focused on deporting violent people or those who commit “serious crimes.”
Whether they have a criminal record or not, anyone with a deportation order faces expulsion from the country. Previously, deportation order for non-criminal immigrants was postponed indefinitely.
Under Trump’s plan, Homeland Security builds new detention facilities to house thousands of undocumented immigrants that cross the southern border between the United States and Mexico. In the past, border patrol released those caught crossing the border while Homeland Security considered requests for asylum.
Existing federal law states the government can quickly deport any undocumented immigrant without due process of the law. So here, there is nothing new about how immigration law will change. However, the Obama administration did not utilize this law. There are over half a million cases waiting to see a judge in immigration court. The Trump administration plans to use federal law to remove these half million undocumented immigrants.
The Trump administration grants children who cross the border special protections. However, their parents face deportation and prosecution for child endangerment. Therefore, anyone who funds “illegal smuggling or trafficking of an alien child into the United States” faces trial.
Since 1996, Congress passed seven laws requiring the country to enable a biometric entry-exit tracking system for all travelers to the United States. Trump’s order expedites the completion and implementation of this tracking system.
The 287(g) program allows Homeland Security to train state and local law enforcement officers as de facto immigration officers for the federal government. Local police trained under 287(g) have the authority to identify undocumented immigrants in their communities and turn them over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. How immigration law will change includes the Trump administration’s plan to expand the 287(g) program so that more local and state police can arrest undocumented immigrants for deportation.
President Trump calls for a hiring surge to create a larger immigration law enforcement force. However, homeland security secretary John F. Kelly doubts that quantity of ICE and border patrol agents hired in that time is possible. Kelly told lawmakers:
“I’d rather have fewer and make sure that they’re high-quality people. I will not skimp on the training and the standards.”
The immigration policy “parole” lends flexibility to the system so that undocumented immigrants who have some claim to leniency may earn citizenship. Common examples of these cases include:
- Cuban immigrants who make it to U.S. soil,
- Close undocumented relatives of U.S. service members and veterans, and
- People with pending applications that need to leave and return to the United States.
Trump calls for parole to be used “sparingly.” Three heads of main immigration agencies plan to issue regulations clarifying when parole can be used.
Green card holders are exempt from the immigration ban. While the original draft did not specify, a February 1st press briefing confirmed this fact.
Questions About How Immigration Law Will Change?
The experienced immigration attorneys at The Henner Group help undocumented immigrants and their families know their rights. If you know someone at risk for deportation, contact an emergency travel attorney at our firm by calling 914-290-5777.