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  • News: USCIS Simplifies Access to Online Data

    News: USCIS Simplifies Access to Online Data

    USCIS Simplifies Access to Online Data Users Can Now Search All USCIS Data from a Single Page WASHINGTON—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that it has consolidated the data pages on its website to include all data on one page. The new Immigration and Citizenship Data page makes information more easily accessible to users. In addition to the redesigned data page, USCIS has published an Understanding Our Data page to help users understand data the agency publishes. “This new and improved data page on our agency website is another step we’ve taken to modernize the information sharing process, provide transparency, and shed additional light on the USCIS mission,” said USCIS Director L. Francis Cissna. “The extensive amount of data we post online is widely searched and accessed by a wide range of visitors, including policy makers, academics, the stakeholder community, and the public. This latest advancement will help ensure users can access data with greater ease, and it will help foster a more informed and accurate understanding of our complex immigration system.” The USCIS website contains a var...
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  • News: DHS and DOL Propose Modernizing Recruitment Requirements for H-2B Employers to Protect U.S. Workers

    DHS and DOL Propose Modernizing Recruitment Requirements for H-2B Employers to Protect U.S. Workers The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in conjunction with the Department of Labor (DOL), has published a joint notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that would modernize the recruitment requirements for employers seeking H-2B nonimmigrant workers to make it easier for U.S. workers to find and fill these open jobs. The H-2B program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary nonagricultural jobs. The proposed rule would require electronic advertisements to be posted on the internet for at least 14 days, replacing the print newspaper advertisements th...
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  • News: The President Addressing Mass Migration Through the Southern Border of the United States


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  • News: USCIS Issuing Biometric Appointment Notices for Domestic N-565 and N-600 Applicants

    USCIS Issuing Biometric Appointment Notices for Domestic N-565 and N-600 Applicants On Nov. 1, 2018, USCIS began requesting that domestic applicants filing Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document, go to an Application Support Center (ASC) appointment to submit biometric information (including photos, signature, and index fingerprint). USCIS will also ask applicants filing Form N-600, Application for Certificate of Citizenship, to begin submitting biometric information at ASC...
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  • News: Brazilian National Found Guilty of Making False Statements in Naturalization Proceedings

    Brazilian National Found Guilty of Making False Statements in Naturalization Proceedings Release Date: Nov. 13, 2018 On Nov. 9, 2018, Etevaldo Ferreira De Souza, 47, of West Palm Beach, Florida, was found guilty by a jury of one count of making false statements in a naturalization proceeding, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1015(a). Ariana Fajardo Orshan, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Mark Selby, special agent in charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI), Miami Field Office, made the announc...
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  • News: CRS Report on Protection of Executive Branch Officials

    News: CRS Report on Protection of Executive Branch Officials


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  • News: Aliens Subject to a Bar on Entry Under Certain Presidential Proclamations; Procedures for Protection Claims


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  • News: Guidance on Determining Suitability of Prospective Adoptive Parents for Intercountry Adoption


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  • News: USCIS Procedural Guidance for Implementing Regulatory Changes Created by Interim Final Rule


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  • News: GPO Publishes Aliens Subject To A Bar On Entry Under Certain Presidential Proclamations; Procedures For Protection Claims

    [Federal Register Volume 83, Number 218 (Friday, November 9, 2018)] [Rules and Regulations] [Pages 55934-55953] From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2018-24594] [[Page 55934]] ======================================================================= ----------------------------------------------------------------------- DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY 8 CFR Part 208 RIN 1615-AC34 DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Executive Office for Immigration Review 8 CFR Parts 1003 and 1208 [EOIR Docket No. 18-0501; A.G. Order No. 4327-2018] RIN 1125-AA89 Aliens Subject to a Bar on Entry Under Certain Presidential Proclamations; Procedures for Protection Claims AGENCY: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security; Executive Office for Immigration Review, Department of Justice. ACTION: Interim final rule; request for comment. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- SUMMARY: The Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security (``DOJ,'' ``DHS,'' or, collectively, ``the Departments'') are adopting an interim final rule governing asylum claims in the context of aliens who are subject to, but contravene, a suspension or limitation on entry into the United States through the southern border with Mexico that is imposed by a presidential proclamation or other presidential order (``a proclamation'') under section 212(f) or 215(a)(1) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (``INA''). Pursuant to statutory authority, the Departments are amending their respective existing regulations to provide that aliens subject to such a proclamation concerning the southern border, but who contravene such a proclamation by entering the United States after the effective date of such a proclamation, are ineligible for asylum. The interim rule, if applied to a proclamation suspending the entry of aliens who cross the southern border unlawfully, would bar such aliens from eligibility for asylum and thereby channel inadmissible aliens to ports of entry, where they would be processed in a controlled, orderly, and lawful manner. This rule would apply only prospectively to a proclamation issued after the effective date of this rule. It would not apply to a proclamation that specifically includes an exception for aliens applying for asylum, nor would it apply to aliens subject to a waiver or exception provided by the proclamation. DHS is amending its regulations to specify a screening process for aliens who are subject to this specific bar to asylum eligibility. DOJ is amending its regulations with respect to such aliens. The regulations would ensure that aliens in this category who establish a reasonable fear of persecution or torture could seek withholding of removal under the INA or protection from removal under regulations implementing U.S. obligations under Article 3 of the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (``CAT''). DATES: Effective date: This rule is effective November 9, 2018. Submission of public comments: Written or electronic comments must be submitted on or before January 8, 2019. Written comments postmarked on or before that date will be considered timely. The electronic Federal Docket Management System will accept comments prior to midnight eastern standard time at the end of that day. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by EOIR Docket No. 18- 0501, by one of the following methods: Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. Mail: Lauren Alder Reid, Assistant Director, Office of Policy, Executive Office for Immigration Review, 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 2616, Falls Church, VA 22041. To ensure proper handling, please reference EOIR Docket No. 18-0501 on your correspondence. This mailing address may be used for paper, disk, or CD-ROM submissions. Hand Delivery/Courier: Lauren Alder Reid, Assistant Director, Office of Policy, Executive Office for Immigration Review, 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 2616, Falls Church, VA 22041, Contact Telephone Number (703) 305-0289 (not a toll-free call). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Lauren Alder Reid, Assistant Director, Office of Policy, Executive Office for Immigration Review, 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 2616, Falls Church, VA 22041, Contact Telephone Number (703) 305-0289 (not a toll-free call). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Public Participation Interested persons are invited to participate in this rulemaking by submitting written data, views, or arguments on all aspects of this rule. The Departments also invite comments that relate to the economic or federalism effects that might result from this rule. To provide the most assistance to the Departments, comments should reference a specific portion of the rule; explain the reason for any recommended change; and include data, information, or authority that supports the recommended change. All comments submitted for this rulemaking should include the agency name and EOIR Docket No. 18-0501. Please note that all comments received are considered part of the public record and made available for public inspection at www.regulations.gov. Such information includes personally identifiable information (such as a person's name, address, or any other data that might personally identify that individual) that the commenter voluntarily submits. If you want to submit personally identifiable information as part of your comment, but do not want it to be posted online, you must include the phrase ``PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION'' in the first paragraph of your comment and precisely and prominently identify the information of which you seek redaction. If you want to submit confidential business information as part of your comment, but do not want it to be posted online, you must include the phrase ``CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS INFORMATION'' in the first paragraph of your comment and precisely and prominently identify the confidential business information of which you seek redaction. If a comment has so much confidential business information that it cannot be effectively redacted, all or part of that comment may not be posted on www.regulations.gov. Personally identifiable information and confidential business information provided as set forth above will be placed in the public docket file of DOJ's Executive Office of Immigration Review (``EOIR''), but not posted online. To inspect the public docket file in person, you must make an appointment with EOIR. Please see the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT paragraph above for the contact information specific to this rule. II. Purpose of This Interim Final Rule This interim final rule (``interim rule'' or ``rule'') governs eligibility for asylum and screening procedures for aliens subject to a presidential proclamation or order restricting entry issued pursuant to section 212(f) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f), or section 215(a)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1185(a)(1), that concerns entry to the United States along the southern border with Mexico and is issued on or after the effective date of this rule. Pursuant to statutory authority, the interim rule renders such aliens ineligible for asylum if they enter the United States after the effective date of [[Page 55935]] such a proclamation, become subject to the proclamation, and enter the United States in violation of the suspension or limitation of entry established by the proclamation. The interim rule, if applied to a proclamation suspending the entry of aliens who cross the southern border unlawfully, would bar such aliens from eligibility for asylum and thereby channel inadmissible aliens to ports of entry, where such aliens could seek to enter and would be processed in an orderly and controlled manner. Aliens who enter prior to the effective date of an applicable proclamation will not be subject to this asylum eligibility bar unless they depart and reenter while the proclamation remains in effect. Aliens also will not be subject to this eligibility bar if they fall within an exception or waiver within the proclamation that makes the suspension or limitation of entry in the proclamation inapplicable to them, or if the proclamation provides that it does not affect eligibility for asylum. As discussed further below, asylum is a discretionary immigration benefit. In general, aliens may apply for asylum if they are physically present or arrive in the United States, irrespective of their status and irrespective of whether or not they arrive at a port of entry, as provided in section 208(a) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1158(a). Congress, however, provided that certain categories of aliens could not receive asylum and further delegated to the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security (``Secretary'') the authority to promulgate regulations establishing additional bars on eligibility that are consistent with the asylum statute and ``any other conditions or limitations on the consideration of an application for asylum'' that are consistent with the INA. See INA 208(b)(2)(C), (d)(5)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(C), (d)(5)(B). In the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigration Responsibility Act of 1996 (``IIRIRA''), Public Law 104-208, Congress, concerned with rampant delays in proceedings to remove illegal aliens, created expedited procedures for removing inadmissible aliens, and authorized the extension of such procedures to aliens who entered illegally and were apprehended within two years of their entry. See generally INA 235(b), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b). Those procedures were aimed at facilitating the swift removal of inadmissible aliens, including those who had entered illegally, while also expeditiously resolving any asylum claims. For instance, Congress provided that any alien who asserted a fear of persecution would appear before an asylum officer, and that any alien who is determined to have established a ``credible fear''-- meaning a ``significant possibility . . . that the alien could establish eligibility for asylum'' under the asylum statute--would be detained for further consideration of an asylum claim. See INA 235(b)(1), (b)(1)(B)(v), 8 U.S.C. 1225(b)(1), (b)(1)(B)(v). When the expedited procedures were first implemented approximately two decades ago, relatively few aliens within those proceedings asserted an intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution. Rather, most aliens found inadmissible at the southern border were single adults who were immediately repatriated to Mexico. Thus, while the overall number of illegal aliens apprehended was far higher than it is today (around 1.6 million in 2000), aliens could be processed and removed more quickly, without requiring detention or lengthy court proceedings. In recent years, the United States has seen a large increase in the number and proportion of inadmissible aliens subject to expedited removal who assert an intent to apply for asylum or a fear of persecution during that process and are subsequently placed into removal proceedings in immigration court. Most of those aliens unlawfully enter the country between ports of entry along the southern border. Over the past decade, the overall percentage of aliens subject to expedited removal and referred, as part of the initial screening process, for a credible-fear interview jumped from approximately 5% to above 40%, and the total number of credible-fear referrals for interviews increased from about 5,000 a year in Fiscal Year (``FY'') 2008 to about 97,000 in FY 2018. Furthermore, the percentage of cases in which asylum officers found that the alien had established a credible fear--leading to the alien's placement in full immigration proceedings under section 240 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1229a--has also increased in recent years. In FY 2008, when asylum officers resolved a referred case with a credible-fear determination, they made a positive finding about 77% of the time. That percentage rose to 80% by FY 2014. In FY 2018, that percentage of positive credible-fear determinations has climbed to about 89% of all cases. After this initial screening process, however, significant proportions of aliens who receive a positive credible-fear determination never file an application for asylum or are ordered removed in absentia. In FY 2018, a total of about 6,000 aliens who passed through credible-fear screening (17% of all completed cases, 27% of all completed cases in which an asylum application was filed, and about 36% of cases where the asylum claim was adjudicated on the merits) established that they should be granted asylum. Apprehending and processing this growing number of aliens who cross illegally into the United States and invoke asylum procedures thus consumes an ever increasing amount of resources of DHS, which must surveil, apprehend, and process the aliens who enter the country. Congress has also required DHS to detain all aliens during the pendency of their credible-fear proceedings, which can take days or weeks. And DOJ must also dedicate substantial resources: Its immigration judges adjudicate aliens' claims, and its officials are responsible for prosecuting and maintaining custody over those who violate the criminal law. The strains on the Departments are particularly acute with respect to the rising numbers of family units, who generally cannot be detained if they are found to have a credible fear, due to a combination of resource constraints and the manner in which the terms of the Settlement Agreement in Flores v. Reno have been interpreted by courts. See Stipulated Settlement Agreement, Flores v. Reno, No. 85-cv-4544 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 17, 1997). In recent weeks, United States officials have each day encountered an average of approximately 2,000 inadmissible aliens at the southern border. At the same time, large caravans of thousands of aliens, primarily from Central America, are attempting to make their way to the United States, with the apparent intent of seeking asylum after entering the United States unlawfully or without proper documentation. Central American nationals represent a majority of aliens who enter the United States unlawfully, and are also disproportionately likely to choose to enter illegally between ports of entry rather than presenting themselves at a port of entry. As discussed below, aliens who enter unlawfully between ports of entry along the southern border, as opposed to at a port of entry, pose a greater strain on DHS's already stretched detention and processing resources and also engage in conduct that seriously endangers themselves, any children traveling with them, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (``CBP'') agents who seek to apprehend them. The United States has been engaged in sustained diplomatic negotiations with Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries (Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala) regarding the situation on the southern border, but those negotiations have, to date, proved [[Page 55936]] unable to meaningfully improve the situation. The purpose of this rule is to limit aliens' eligibility for asylum if they enter in contravention of a proclamation suspending or restricting their entry along the southern border. Such aliens would contravene a measure that the President has determined to be in the national interest. For instance, a proclamation restricting the entry of inadmissible aliens who enter unlawfully between ports of entry would reflect a determination that this particular category of aliens necessitates a response that would supplement existing prohibitions on entry for all inadmissible aliens. Such a proclamation would encourage such aliens to seek admi...
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