DHS Takes a Different Tack with Deportation
Attempted immigration reforms backed by the Obama administration included the 2010 DREAM Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors), which was a bill proposing that undocumented immigrants who met certain requirements and arrived in the United States as minors could have a path to citizenship. This bill passed the house. However, unfortunately, the Senate defeated it.
A divisive Congress thwarted immigration reform efforts, and meanwhile, deportation continued to escalate. According to a Reuters report: Obama deportations raise immigration policy questions, during the two and a half years that President Obama was in office, his administration deported an estimated 1.6 million immigrants. For a president favoring immigration reform, this statistic did not compare well to the eight years it took the Bush Administration to deport 1.57 million immigrants.
Low Priority Cases
In an effort to curb the deportation trend, the administration implemented a policy change through the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Instead of indiscriminately deporting undocumented immigrants or immigrants who were in violation of immigration laws, the DHS refocused on deporting immigrants convicted of serious crimes. The DHS expanded this strategy shift that began in 2010 by reviewing each deportation case and closing low priority cases, thus removing them from the dockets. Under the new policy, the DHS allows individuals deemed low priority to apply for a work permit program.
If you are facing deportation and removal, you need a skilled lawyer to help you navigate the ever changing and complex aspects of immigration law. Find out how a New York immigration lawyer experienced in handling deportation cases can help.