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On Thursday, August 18th, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced it will begin a thorough review of the 300,000 pending deportation caseload to refocus enforcement efforts away from “low priority” immigrants and toward “high priority individuals,” such as those who have committed crimes. DHS will now consider DREAM Act-eligible youths, relatives of veterans, and other individuals who are currently in the deportation process and who have no prior criminal convictions, non-threatening; they will move to dismiss their cases and, on a “case per case basis,” issue work permits.
This is a step in the right direction and could be crucial for so many facing deportation, yet we still need more comprehensive and compassionate immigration policies that move away from the current enforcement-only strategy and towards more humane and compassionate policies. Last week, August 17th, hundreds of student, community and faith leaders came out to call on DHS and the Obama Administration to stop the Secure Communities Program. Six undocumented students were arrested after participated in an act of civil disobedience, putting their lives on the line to stop the broken Secure Communities Program. Read more from the Immigrant Youth Justice League
Please take a moment to thank the President Obama for this important administrative action.
“I’m calling to thank President Obama for taking a step in the right direction through more responsible enforcement strategies. We still need more permanent immigration policy solutions that keep families together and to stop the implementation of programs like Secure Communities that are harmful for our communities.”