Author Archives: Juan Gastelum

NILC Statement on Biden Administration’s Public Charge Rule

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 8, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected]
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458 

NILC Statement on the Biden Administration’s Public Charge Rule

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement in response to the Biden administration’s new public charge rule:

“For several years, the National Immigration Law Center and a broad diverse coalition of allies fought back against Trump’s cruel public charge wealth test that threatened the health, nutrition, and housing of millions of families. The Biden administration’s public charge rule aligns with longstanding principles in immigration law and provides helpful clarifications to pre-existing guidance. This policy is an important step in advancing the Biden administration’s priority of addressing socioeconomic and racial inequities that have been exacerbated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the Biden administration to ensure these regulations are implemented and communicated in a way that will promote healthier communities and affirm that all of us – no matter how much money we have, where we were born, or what we look like – have access to the tools and supports we need to thrive.”

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NILC Statement on Biden Administration’s New DACA Regulation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 24, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected]
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458

NILC Statement on Biden Administration’s New DACA Regulation 

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement in response to the Biden administration’s newly released regulation on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy:

“For more than ten years, DACA has positively transformed the lives of hundreds of thousands of immigrant youth and their communities. We welcome the Biden administration’s continued efforts to ensure that DACA recipients can remain here in the country they call home. While the Biden administration’s new rule sends a clear message that DACA works, our communities need more.

“Strengthening DACA is a crucial step, but it is not a substitute for congressional action. Congress must pass a permanent solution, not only for DACA recipients, but for as many immigrant youth as possible. As we continue to fight back politically motivated attacks on DACA, we urge the administration to move swiftly to implement the new rule and ensure a measure of stability for hundreds of thousands of our community members whose home is here.”

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NILC Statement on Court Decision in Pars Equality Center v. Pompeo  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 2, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected],
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458

NILC Statement on Court Decision in Pars Equality Center v. Pompeo  

WASHINGTON — After a federal court ruled that the Biden administration must undo the harms of the Muslim and African Bans and reconsider denied visa applications, Max Wolson, staff attorney at the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement:

“This momentous victory is a result of tireless organizing by communities around the country and will have profound impact on those whose lives and livelihoods have been derailed by the Muslim and African bans. Now, we look to the Biden administration to do the right thing by living up to its promises, redressing the ongoing harms of these discriminatory bans, and finally establishing a fair process to ensure that people denied opportunities and relief in the U.S. no longer have to live in limbo.”

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Families, Civil Rights Organizations Celebrate Court Decision that U.S. Government Must Redress Muslim Ban Harms 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 2, 2022

CONTACT
Madison Allman, NILC, [email protected], 202-384-1279
Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, [email protected]

Families, Civil Rights Organizations Celebrate Court Decision that U.S. Government Must Redress Muslim Ban Harms 

Federal court rules Biden administration must undo the harms of the Muslim and African Bans and proactively reconsider denied visa applicants 

No Muslim Ban Ever Coalition of over 100 Muslim and immigrants’ rights groups hails decision, mobilizes to hold Biden administration accountable to ruling

SAN FRANCISCO – While families remain separated by the Trump administration’s racist and Islamophobic Muslim and African Bans, a federal court in San Francisco ruled in Pars Equality Center, et. al. v. Pompeo, et. al. that the Biden administration must  undo the harms of the Bans. 

The Biden administration must now meet with the plaintiffs to establish a fair and effective process to reopen and reconsider applications from people who were denied family reunification, jobs and educational opportunities, and medical treatment as a result of the Bans and the current administration’s protracted refusals to redress the lasting harms, even after rescinding the Bans on President Biden’s first day in office. 

“Our clients have been living in legal limbo for years, unable to live full, abundant lives, pursue their careers, and start a family,” said Paris Etemadi Scott, Legal Director at Pars Equality Center, which brought the lawsuit with others in 2018. “Communities in every part of the U.S. and in countries around the world are celebrating: the Biden administration must finish the work of their rescission and end the shameful discrimination that people from Muslim-majority and African countries have faced, simply because of where they were born. This decision shows the power of relentless community organizing for what’s right.” 

With offices spread across California, Pars Equality Center provides extensive social and legal services to Iranian Americans, Persian-speaking, and other underserved immigrant communities. Since the Biden administration rescinded the Bans, dozens of the center’s clients have endured an indefinite state of limbo. As a result of the ruling, the U.S. government has been ordered to quickly remedy the lasting harms of the Bans with a clear and legitimate process.

In the wake of the ruling, the No Muslim Ban Ever Coalition, the largest national grassroots coalition focused on rescinding the Bans, is mobilizing to ensure the Biden administration effectively and swiftly implements the court’s ruling. The coalition continues to advocate for the NO BAN Act, which would limit dangerously broad authority in U.S. immigration law so that no future president can issue bans that bar the entry of people based on their religion or national origin. 

Prior to rescission, more than 41,800 individuals and families have been denied visas and waivers under the Muslim and African Bans without notice of the process, an opportunity to submit evidence or file for reconsideration. Despite the Biden administration’s rescission of the Bans, families remain separated and caught in a black hole of administrative delays, with little information or clarity and no recourse to repair the damage. More than 34,800 people signed a petition in the past year urging the Biden administration to allow all individuals who were denied entry by the Bans their fair shot at immigration.

Pars Equality Center and community members from Muslim-majority countries were represented by the National Immigration Law Center, Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, Council on American-Islamic Relations – California, Iranian American Bar Association, and Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP.

Additional details and documents related to the case, Pars Equality Center, et. al. v. Pompeo, et. al., can be found here: https://www.nilc.org/issues/litigation/pars-equality-center-v-pompeo/

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NILC Statement on the Nomination of Araceli Martínez-Olguín to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 29, 2022

CONTACT
Juan Gastelum, [email protected], 213-375-3149

NILC Statement on the Nomination of Araceli Martínez-Olguín to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), issued the following statement on President Biden’s nomination of Araceli Martínez-Olguín, a supervising attorney at NILC, to serve as a federal district judge:

“The National Immigration Law Center proudly and enthusiastically supports the nomination of our own Araceli Martínez-Olguín to serve as a federal judge in the Northern District of California. Ms. Martínez-Olguín is an exemplary litigator whose work over many years at NILC and other leading national civil rights organizations has served to advance gender, economic, and racial equity, and justice for all people. Her remarkable understanding of the Constitution and the law, her tenacity in advocating for the people she has represented throughout her career, and her lived experience as a Latina immigrant will bring an invaluable perspective to the federal judiciary at this crucial moment for our country. She is exactly the type of judge we need on the federal bench who will be fair, judicious, and ensure that our legal system can still be a tool for achieving equity, equality, and justice for all.

“Ms. Martínez-Olguín’s nomination is a testament to President Biden’s commitment to nominating qualified jurists to serve on the bench, who also move us closer to a judiciary that reflects the diversity of our country. We thank Senator Padilla for recommending her nomination and we urge the Senate Judiciary Committee to expeditiously consider and confirm Ms. Martínez-Olguín to serve as a federal judge.”

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NILC Statement on the Supreme Court Ruling Decision on Remain in Mexico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 30, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected],
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279
Juan Gastelum, 213-375-3149

NILC Statement on the Supreme Court Decision in Remain in Mexico Case (Biden v. Texas)

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Biden v. Texas:

“For nearly three years, the Remain in Mexico policy has subjected tens of thousands of people to grave danger while violating their fundamental right to seek asylum in the United States. Today’s victory at the Supreme Court is a testament to the strength of the immigrant rights movement and the people across the country who fought back against this and other cruel deterrence policies, which just this week contributed to the tragic deaths of more than 50 migrants in San Antonio, Texas.

“This is a significant victory, but it does not obscure how much damage this ideologically driven and politically motivated Court has done to a range of rights during this term. Our work is far from over.

“The U.S. for generations has been a refuge for those fleeing danger and persecution. We must welcome people with dignity and humanity, and we urge the Biden administration to move swiftly to permanently end every facet of the human rights disaster that is Remain in Mexico.”

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NILC Statement on the 10-year Anniversary of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 15, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected],
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279

NILC Statement on the 10-year Anniversary of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

WASHINGTON — Today, the National Immigration Law Center celebrates the 10th anniversary of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, said: “On this 10th anniversary of one of the most transformative public policies, we at the National Immigration Law Center stand proud of having supported immigrant youth in achieving DACA and in leading its successful implementation. For the last decade, DACA has provided hundreds of thousands of people with opportunities to pursue their work and educational goals, better provide for themselves and their families, and more fully contribute to their communities.

“Despite its success, we have had to defend DACA against relentless attacks since its inception. DACA has served as a lifeline, but DACA recipients need lasting stability. Voters across the political spectrum overwhelmingly favor a permanent solution, and lawmakers have a mandate to deliver. We call on Congress to urgently pass a permanent legislative solution.”

Diana Pliego, a policy associate at the National Immigration Law Center and a DACA recipient who first applied for the policy in 2012, said: “DACA transformed my life and has allowed me to walk through doors I never imagined I could. But the life I have stands on shaky ground: DACA has been constantly under attack. It was never meant to be a permanent solution. Our community needs stability in the country we call home. We seek full inclusion, access to basic human rights like health care, and citizenship. It is past time for Congress to step up and fulfill the promises that they’ve made to our community. Enough is enough.”

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Congresswoman Jayapal, SEIU President, and National Leaders Ramp Up Pressure to End Title 42

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 23, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected],
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458
Bilal Askaryar, Welcome With Dignity, [email protected]

Congresswoman Jayapal, SEIU President, and National Leaders Ramp Up Pressure to End Title 42

Friday’s injunction makes restoring asylum more urgent than ever

Listen to a recording of the call here

WASHINGTON — Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus joined leaders of SEIU, NILC, and Human Rights First to mark the day that should have been the end of the anti-refugee, anti-Black, and anti-LGBTQ policy known as Title 42. A recent court injunction has barred the end of the policy, and Congress is still expected to vote on amendments to a COVID relief bill that would go even further by effectively ending asylum indefinitely. Joined by Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, national leaders called for the decisive end of this cruel Trump-era policy and reiterate the need for a fair and humane asylum system that centers the dignity of all people.

“Title 42 is a racist, xenophobic relic of the Trump Administration’s anti-immigrant agenda. Friday’s decision by a federal judge to keep the policy in place was wrong, driven by politics and not facts. I applaud the DOJ for already signaling it will move to appeal this ruling,” said Congresswoman Jayapal. “As Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, I’m proud to stand side by side with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in opposing any amendments and any legislation that would reinstate Title 42. It is past time to stop using immigrants as political footballs and do what we must – pass humane immigration reform.”

“The Trump administration weaponized Title 42 to block people from exercising their fundamental right to seek asylum,” said Marielena Hincapié, Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC). “This cruel policy never had a basis in public health, and the Biden administration made the correct, if overdue, decision to end it. We urge the administration to vigorously defend ending Title 42 expulsions against those who would wish to cement this horrific Trump policy into law. Independent of what the courts decide, Congress must reject any legislation that would indefinitely block access to the legal right to seek asylum in the United States.”

“Judge Summerhays’ decision to keep Title 42 in place and continue to turn away people seeking refuge at our border is an affront to our core values as Americans and to our history as a beacon for the oppressed,” said Mary Kay Henry, International President of Service Employees International Union (SEIU). In light of this terrible decision, my message today could not be simpler, nor could it be more urgent: Working people demand a government that works for all expect Congress and the President to stand with immigrants and refugees and use every power at their disposal to support humane policies at the border and a path to citizenship.”

“The use of Title 42 not only leads to more repeat border crossings and inflated border-crossing statistics, it allows the United States to evade its own immigration and refugee laws. The Biden administration’s decision to end Title 42 was a crucial step in returning the United States to an asylum system that meets American law and its treaty obligations. It is encouraging that the Justice Department quickly filed an appeal to the Louisiana court’s ruling, which extends the use of a policy, ostensibly based on public health, that public health experts have concluded is not needed. Now it is critical that the administration take all necessary steps to defend the CDC’s decision to end the use of Title 42,” said Michael Breen, President and CEO of Human Rights First.

A recording of the call is available here.

The Welcome with Dignity Campaign is composed of more than 100 national and regional organizations committed to transforming the way the United States receives and protects people forced to flee their homes to ensure they are treated humanely and fairly. To learn more and join our campaign visit: welcomewithdignity.org

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NILC Statement on Court Order Extending Title 42

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 20, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected],
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279

NILC Statement on Court Order Extending Title 42

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement in response to a Louisiana federal judge’s preliminary injunction blocking the Biden administration from ending Title 42 expulsions on May 23:

“This politically-driven decision by a Trump-appointed judge will continue to deny people their legal and fundamental right to seek asylum in the United States. The Biden administration made the right call to finally put an end to Title 42 expulsions, and we urge the administration to vigorously defend its decision in court.

“Regardless of what the courts decide, Congress must reject the Lankford-Sinema bill, or any other piece of legislation that would indefinitely block access to the legal right to asylum in the United States. As a country, we are at our best when we welcome people seeking safety, and we must rebuild a fair, equitable asylum system that recognizes the dignity inherent in us all.”

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NILC Statement on the Supreme Court Majority Draft Opinion Overturning Roe v. Wade

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 3, 2022

CONTACT
Email: [email protected],
Madison Allman, 202-384-1279
Emily Morris, 213-457-7458

NILC Statement on the Supreme Court Majority Draft Opinion Overturning Roe v. Wade

WASHINGTON — Victoria Ballesteros, chief communications officer at the National Immigration Law Center and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund, issued the following statement in response to the leaked U.S. Supreme Court draft majority opinion overturning the decisions in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey:

“This horrifying draft decision forecasts the culmination of a long-running political scheme to install a conservative majority and weaponize the Supreme Court to roll back and restrict essential reproductive and other rights. A decision overturning the right to an abortion will have life-altering consequences, especially for low-income communities and people of color, including many immigrants. The Supreme Court’s assault on fundamental rights will not stop with access to abortion; we are in the middle of a fight for the basic human rights of everybody who calls this country home.

“The National Immigration Law Center stands in solidarity with leaders in the fight to ensure equitable and safe access to life-saving health care, which includes access to abortion and other reproductive health care services. We will continue to fight for our fundamental rights to be protected under the law.

“In 2020, a historic multigenerational coalition of voters gave Democrats a governing trifecta to address the challenges facing our nation. Now, we urge Democrats to wield that power and take swift action to ensure that a person’s access to reproductive health care is never called into question again.”

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