Detention: October 2009 Archives
The blogs are all buzzing with chatter about yesterday's rally and Rep. Gutierrez's introduction of principles for his bill on comprehensive immigration reform. Yes, the principles are more vague than some of us had hoped. No, this appears not to be yet another enforcement-heavy bill like those we have seen in the past few years. So, let's take this moment to recognize this opportunity for what it is - a real opportunity to advance immigration reform this Congress - and come together.I'm not going to refute Sheff because I really respect her willingness to take a stand and push back. That's what social media and the sanctuarysphere should be all about. The reason I'm linking to her is because she highlights a video worth watching on migrant detention produced by Georgia Detention Watch.Becca Sheff - It's Our Community (14 October 2009)
Julio Maldonado will be deported this week unless DHS exercises its discretion to wait until Julio's pardon request can be heard. **Action requested: call DHS and Governor Rendell at the numbers below!**
Julio and his cousin Denis Calderon, longtime lawful permanent residents from Peru, were victims of a racially-motivated attack in Philadelphia in 1996 during which Denis was beaten and stabbed. Julio and Denis were wrongfully convicted of aggravated assault while their white attackers were never charged with any crime. The original convicting judge later vacated his own verdict after reviewing expert testimony that later came to light, but the District Attorney's office appealed the decision and won on a technical argument. Now Julio stands on the brink of deportation, 38 years after arriving in the U.S. as a toddler and 32 years after receiving his green card.
Julio has spent the last 4 years in jail for "hindering his own removal" by refusing to sign the papers required to process his Peruvian travel documents. Now the Peruvian consulate has issued temporary travel documents that do not require Julio's consent, and DHS wants to deport him now. Julio filed a request for a pardon from governor Rendell on July 1, 2009, but DHS does not want to wait for a decision on the pardon. In denying Julio's request for a stay of removal last month, DHS held that Julio's desire to remain with his family instead of accepting permanent exile to Peru was considered an adverse factor weighing against an exercise of favorable discretion.
Why does DHS view family unity as an "adverse factor"?
***Please call David Venturella, Acting Director of ICE's Office of Detention and Removal Operation, at (202) 732-3100 to request that DHS allow Julio to stay in the U.S. until his request for a pardon is reviewed by Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell.***
***Please call Governor Rendell's office at (717) 787-2500 and ask the governor (1) to expedite review of Julio's pardon request and (2) to request that DHS wait to deport him until the pardon request is reviewed.***
The Restore Fairness campaign is calling on the U.S. government to restore due process and fairness to our immigration system.I have mixed feelings about the Obama administration's proposed detention reforms. So far, I prefer the analysis of the National Immigration Law Center, as reported by Kevin Johnson of the ImmigrationProf Blog:Restore Fairness Website (7 October 2009)
Flicker of Change, but no Legal Torch to Light The Way: DHS Report Outlines Problems with Immigrant Detention System, but Lacks Enforcement Mechanisms for Proposed Solution
The National Immigration Law Center has issued a press release claiming that the 35-page report on immigrant detention conditions released today by the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security (DHS) (pdf) is a critical first step by the Obama administration in acknowledging the myriad problems with the way the United States treats the nearly 400,000 men and women in its immigrant detention system. The NILC welcomes the report's finding that the framework for the current system, which is premised on a criminal justice framework, must be rejected.
However, although the report recognizes that 89 percent of detainees are nonviolent, it fails to call for any serious attempt to reduce the size of the immigrant detainee population. In addition, although the report calls for the creation of a new set of detention standards geared towards an exclusively civil detainee population, the administration has not indicated that it will make these new standards for detention centers legally enforceable.