The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) has applauded the brainstorm of ideas in a draft memo from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The now-public draft, leaked without the permission of USCIS, examines the legal framework of immigration and explores possible solutions. AILA commends this reflection of the pursuit of the rule of law and the willingness of USCIS leadership to take up this thorough examination.
“We have in the past seen many attempts to scour the law to find justification for draconian, and ultimately unhelpful, ways to make immigrants’ lives miserable,” said AILA president David Leopold. “This draft document tries to think through ways to make the legal immigration system work in support of sensible law enforcement. It respects the law and respects the people who must deal with the law. For that, the administration is to be congratulated, even if none of the proposals is ever carried out.” He added that many of these proposals should be carried out. Long-needed regulations to help children and crime victims caught in the system should be published. Men and women fighting for America in the U.S. military should have the comfort of knowing that their families are safe from being deported. Immigration policies that encourage investment in America and creation of jobs should be emphasized and expanded. These are but a few of several excellent proposals in this document.
“We will never effectively address illegal immigration until we develop a legal immigration system that actually works and that offers people a realistic alternative to illegality,” added AILA Executive Director Crystal Williams. “Congress has thus far refused to act. Administration officials at least are trying to find ways to help fill this vacuum,” Williams stated.