Arrests of border crossing immigrants dropped from 2008 to 2009. Detention of migrants crossing from Mexico into the United States in 2009 dropped to 556,000, which is the lowest since the 1970s.
Arrests of border crossing immigrants peaked in 2000 when 1.6 million arrests were made. The sharp decrease is likely due to high unemployment and tighter enforcement along the Mexico border.
The Obama administration points to the decreasing flow of immigrants as evidence that homeland security has improved under Obama.
Republicans are skeptical, because many miles of the border are still thinly patrolled and lack fencing. Republicans still call for stronger worker verification measures to block illegal employment.
If you or a loved one is currently in the United States illegally, contact The Nunez Firm to discuss your case and discover whether you have any options for staying in the United States legally. The Nunez Firm offers free consultations. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will personally discuss your immigration situation with you in order to determine which options might be available to you.
We recently found out that a client, who is a domestic abuse victim, was approved for VAWA. She married her husband in 2007, and almost immediately he began abusing her in many different ways. He routinely insulted and degraded her at home and in public. He viewed her as his property and expected her to obey him no matter what. He raped her on at least three occasions, and after that, she gave up fighting back. He slapped and beat her for the most minor reasons including not having dinner ready on time or not cleaning the house properly. He threatened to kill her by burning her alive on many occasions. Finally, after six months of marriage, she left him.
We filed for VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) relief over a year ago. USCIS has a substantial backlog for VAWA cases, and it generally takes over a year to receive a decision.
The client is currently living in Southern California with some family members. She is still married to her husband because he refuses to grant her a divorce (due to religious customs she is unable to get a divorce without his approval). She has continued to see a therapist regarding her marriage, and she is still in the healing process. She was very happy when she found out that her VAWA case was granted.
We will be filing the adjustment of status application as soon as possible, so that she will become a lawful permanent resident in the United States.
If you or a loved one is an alien victim of domestic violence, contact The Nunez Firm for a free consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez handles more VAWA cases than any other type of immigration matter. You have options and you do not need to stay with your abusive spouse.
An Orange County client was approved for his green card yesterday after an adjustment of status interview in Santa Ana. He married his United States citizen wife earlier this year and the couple lives in Westminster, California together. Because he married a U.S. Citizen and entered the country legally using a student visa in 2007, he was eligible to adjust status and become a lawful permanent resident without leaving the United States and returning to his home country of India.
The couple was extremely happy with the result. Now they will be able to continue living together in the Orange County, California, and the husband will be able to work and help support his wife and family.
If you are married to a United States Citizen and are interested in obtaining lawful permanent resident status, contact The Nunez Firm for a free consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will discuss your immigration situation with you and help you determine your options and likelihood of success.
Hundreds of legal immigrants in Southern California who have been waiting years for citizenship will have their cases resolved as a result of a settlement with the federal government, attorneys announced today.
The immigrants were stuck in lengthy delays as they waited for the FBI to complete their security name checks and for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to approve their citizenship applications.
The settlement, approved Friday in U.S. District Court in Santa Ana, sets a six-month deadline for the government to decide on hundreds of citizenship applications from Los Angeles, Santa Ana and San Bernardino.
The settlement also ends indefinite delays in processing naturalization applications, according to the plaintiffs.
“The naturalization process has been a bureaucratic nightmare for so many permanent residents who did everything right to become citizens of this country,” Jennie Pasquarella, staff attorney with the ACLU of Southern California, said today in a statement. “This restores the dream of citizenship and ensures that the government will be held accountable.”
The plaintiffs, including the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Immigration Law Center, filed the suit in 2007 and argued that legal permanent residents lost jobs, were prevented from voting and missed out on in-state tuition breaks because of the delays.
Sonali Kolhatkar, one of the plaintiffs, came to the U.S. on a student visa in 1991 and got married soon after. The United Arab Emirates-born journalist filed for citizenship in 2005, but then years passed without any word on her case, despite her persistent efforts to find out what was causing the delay. [Updated at 1:50 p.m.: A previous version of this post said Kolhatkar came to the U.S. in 1999.]
“It just came to a complete standstill,” said Kolhatkar, 34, a radio host with KPFK-FM (90.7) in Los Angeles.
Kolhatkar said the delay prevented her from voting in the presidential election and impacted her work. As a result of the lawsuit, Kolhatkar said, she became a citizen in March. She said today that she was relieved for other immigrants, whose applications will no longer be sent into a black hole.
“It’s about time,” she said. “This is absolutely thrilling.”
Originally reported in Los Angeles Times.
If you are currently waiting for your naturalization application to be decided, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a free consultation.
We just received the approved Employment Authorization Card for an approved VAWA client. His VAWA case was approved several years ago, and we have been waiting to adjust his status to permanent resident. However, until we can adjust his status in the immigration court in Los Angeles, he is authorized to work. His previous work authorization card expired in May of this year, and we filed for a renewal of employment authorization. USCIS took several months to process the application, but today we received the new work authorization card.
The client is extremely happy. With the new work authorization card he can show his employer he is authorized to work in the United States. Additionally, he will be able to get a new driver’s license.
If you or a loved one would like to discuss your immigration case and discover whether you are eligible for work authorization or a green card, contact The Nunez Firm for a free consultation.
United States Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis made several comments regarding immigration enforcement and workers’ rights.
“The Department of Labor is firmly committed to protecting the rights of all workers, and especially the rights of the most vulnerable workers in our economy.
“The violation of any one worker’s rights is cause for concern to all American workers. When unscrupulous employers abuse vulnerable workers, honest employers and their workers suffer.
“I am proud that, as of Oct. 13, the Labor Department has hired 224 new wage and hour investigators to seek out employers in violation of the law wherever they may be. These investigators are working hard every single day to ensure that every worker is paid at least the minimum wage, that those who work overtime are properly compensated, that child labor laws are strictly enforced and that every worker is provided a safe and healthful environment.
“Wage and hour laws apply to every single worker in this country, regardless of immigration status. My department is working tirelessly to protect all workers’ rights.”