deferred action pros & cons

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  • 7/31/2019 Deferred Action Pros & Cons

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    339 Lafayette St, 3rd Floor Suite 304 New York, NY 10012 646.484.8537 info@nysylc.org nysylc.org

    DeferredActionPros&ConsbyImmigrationAttorneyDaveBennion

    Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano issued on Friday, June152012 instructions to federal immigration agencies not to deport undocumented youth who meetcertain criteria. The criteria are based on the provisions of the proposed DREAM Act. President

    Obama announced the policy change at the White House soon afterward.

    The new policy, if implemented, would provide temporary relief to many undocumented youth

    in the United States. Undocumented organizers who fought for their rights and their communitiesdeserve the credit for today's policy change.

    Pros:

    Itallowspeopletoapplyaffirmatively,notjustaftertheyhavebeencaughtupinthedeportationprocess.Thiswillpotentiallybenefitamuchgreaternumberofpeople

    thanpreviousguidance.Workpermitsareavailable.Many,thoughnotall,ofapplicantsgranteddeferredaction

    willbeeligibleforworkpermits.Atwoyearperiodofdeferredactionwillbegrantedtosuccessfulapplicants.Thepolicyaffectsallthreeimmigrationagencies.Today'spolicymemofollowsaseries

    ofsimilarmemosoverthepasttwoyearswhichhavedonelittletostemthetideof

    recorddeportationsunderthispresident.Previousguidanceonexercising

    prosecutorialdiscretioninlinewithenforcementprioritieswasdirectedonlyto

    ImmigrationandCustomsEnforcement(ICE),whichignoredtheguidance.Today's

    memocomesfromSecretaryNapolitanoandisdirectedtoallthreeagencies:Customs

    andBorderProtection(CBP),U.S.CitizenshipandImmigrationServices(USCIS),and

    ICE.Hopefullythepolicywillbeappliedmorecomprehensivelyacrosstheagencies

    thantheprosecutorialdiscretionpolicyhasbeen.

    USCISwillhavemorecontrolovertheprocess.ThemajorityofapplicationswillbereviewedbyUSCIS,whichadjudicatesapplicationsforimmigrationbenefitsandisnot

    formallytaskedwithimmigrationenforcement.

    Cons:Thisisnotanexecutiveorder.ThepolicydoesnotgrantDeferredEnforcedDeparture

    (DED)orTemporaryProtectedStatus(TPS),whicharedesignatedbythePresidentbyexecutiveorderonhumanitariangrounds.EventhoughthePresidentdecideswho

    doesordoesn'tqualifyforTPSandDED,thesestatusescarrycertaindueprocess

    protections.Applicationscanbeappealedinimmigrationcourtifinitiallydenied.TPS

    orDEDstatuscannotbeterminatedwithoutcause.Incontrast,thepolicyannounced

    todayonlygrantsdeferredaction.Thereisnorighttoappealadenial.While

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    339 Lafayette St, 3rd Floor Suite 304 New York, NY 10012 646.484.8537 info@nysylc.org nysylc.org

    applicantscanaskforsupervisoryreviewofaninitialdenial,thatsupervisorydecision

    willbefinal.DHScandenyanyapplicationinitsdiscretioneveniftheapplicantmeetsthe

    eligibilitycriteria.Wewilllikelyseemanyofthesamedueprocessproblemsthatwe

    haveseenwiththeprosecutorialdiscretionpolicy,whichledtoagrantrateof1.5%.

    Therewillbenoimpartialadjudicator,norighttomeaningfulreviewoffaulty

    decisions,andnoformalizedwaytopresentandevaluateevidenceorlegal

    arguments.TheprovisionsdealingwithcriminalconvictionswillallowDHStowronglydeny

    applications.The"significantmisdemeanor"isanewconceptinimmigrationlaw

    uniquetothispolicy.Someconvictionswillnotclearlyfallinsideoroutsidethe

    "significantmisdemeanor"category,andUSCISofficerslacktheguidanceand

    expertisetonavigatethosewaters.Initsprosecutorialdiscretionreview,DHShas

    treatedanyarrestasequivalenttoaconviction.Thispolicyturnsthepresumptionof

    innocenceonitshead,denyingundocumentedpeopletheprotectionsafforded

    citizensinthecriminaljusticesystem.SincethepolicyannouncedtodayisbasedsolelyonthediscretionofDHS,theriskishighthatDHSwillcontinuetotreatanycontact

    withthecriminaljusticesystemasfataltoanapplication,regardlessofwhetherthere

    wasaconviction.Deferredaction,oncegranted,canbeterminatedatanytimewithoutjustificationor

    review.Manypeoplewillbedeportedsimplyforapplyingfordeferredaction.USCISwillrefer

    somedeniedcasestoICEforinitiationofremovalproceedings.Sincethereisnoright

    toappealanerroneousdecisionbyUSCISunderthenewpolicy,mistakesmaygo

    uncorrectedandleadtothedeportationofqualifiedapplicants. Immigrationenforcementofficersarelikelytoignorethenewpolicy.ApplicationsfordeferredactionwillbeadjudicatedonlybyUSCISofficersandICEattorneys.ICE

    enforcementofficersandBorderPatrolofficershavebeeninstructedtofollowthe

    policyguidelines.ButICEandBorderPatrolofficersignoredpriorinstructionstofollow

    theprosecutorialdiscretionguidelinesandfacednoconsequences.Theproposed

    remedywhenICEorBorderPatrolofficersviolatethenewguidelinesistocalltheLaw

    EnforcementSupportCenterhotlineorcomplaintotheICEOfficeofthePublic

    Advocate.ManypeoplewhoarewronglytargetedbyICEorBorderPatrolwillnotbe

    inapositiontodoeitherofthosethings,andtheircaseswillnevercometothe

    attentionofthepublicorthosewhoaretaskedwithmonitoringimplementationof

    thispolicy.DHS'sinternalmonitoringproceduresareopaqueandineffective,soeven

    whencomplaintsaremade,theyarenotlikelytoproduceresults.

    ReadmoreinformationaboutDeferredActiononwww.nysylc.org

    Contactusatinfo@nysylc.orgformorequestionsandconcerns