Category Archives: January 2012

Muñoz to Lead White House Domestic Policy Council

January 10, 2012

Adela de la Torre, NILC, (213) 674-2832; [email protected]

Muñoz to Lead White House Domestic Policy Council

WASHINGTON, DC – The White House announced today that Cecilia Muñoz, the current director of intergovernmental affairs, has been tapped to succeed Melody Barnes as director of the Domestic Policy Council. The Domestic Policy Council advises the President on the nation’s top domestic policy needs, especially on issues of importance to working class families. Below is a statement from Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center:

“President Obama chose the right woman for the job. Cecilia’s strong leadership and strategic thinking will be an enormous asset to the administration as she helps shape and implement its domestic agenda. She also brings decades of experience working to improve the quality of life for all members of “the 99%” to this position, which is even more important during this time of economic uncertainty. The daughter of Bolivian immigrants, Cecilia truly understands that in order to make the American Dream a reality in the future, we must make sound investments in our families and communities today. During her time at the National Council of La Raza, Cecilia was an ardent proponent of preserving the social safety net for all families, increasing access to quality, affordable health care, and ensuring all workers have the freedom to exercise their labor rights.

“Cecilia’s appointment to this critical position in the White House helps create a public sector that better reflects our own multicultural country. At a time of unprecedented attacks on Latino and immigrant communities across the country, Cecilia serves as a reminder of the power of a ‘Si, se puede’ attitude and the drive to create a prosperous future for all American families, no matter their socioeconomic or immigration status.”

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Prioritizing Families

January 6, 2012

Obama Administration Proposes Sensible Changes That Will Let Many Families Avoid Prolonged Separation

WASHINGTON, DC — Many immigrants in the process of obtaining permanent residency through sponsorship by U.S. citizen spouses or parents will no longer need to undergo prolonged separation from their families, if a proposal by the Obama administration is put into effect. The Obama administration today announced a common-sense proposal to revise the immigration system, allowing immigrants with U.S. citizen family members who are eligible for waivers of the 3- and 10-year “unlawful presence” bars to file their applications in the United States rather than having to return to their country of birth and stay there for many months while their applications for waivers are processed. This change could benefit many low-income immigrant families. Below is a statement from Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center:

“Today, the Obama administration rightly recognized that family unity should never be sacrificed for bureaucracy. Until now, many U.S. citizen spouses and parents who wished to adjust the status of their loved ones faced a Solomon’s choice: risk having a loved one return to his or her country of birth to submit an application, and face a separation of up to 10 years, or continue living together in constant fear of deportation. Current immigration rules make no sense for those who seek to keep families whole and communities strong.

“A government bureaucracy that forces mothers and fathers to be separated from their children is simply out of step with our commonly held family values. Today’s announcement is a welcome step for immigrant families, but we know full reform can only come through congressional action.

“This sensible policy can and should go a step further by extending the same consideration to families of lawful permanent residents (those with “green cards”), who also may apply for permanent residency for their spouses and children but cannot currently do so without having to suffer prolonged separation from their family members under the 3- and 10-year bars.

“This important proposed change by the Obama administration has not yet been put in place. It is important for immigrant community members to be very careful about not falling prey to ‘notario’ fraud or others who claim that this announcement represents an immigration benefit that is immediately available. Until the Obama administration’s proposed rule is finalized, there is no new immigration benefit. But once this proposal does become law, it will undoubtedly have a tremendous impact on the many U.S. families made up of U.S. citizen and undocumented immigrants.”

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Read the Q & A



La Administración Obama Propone Cambios Razonables que Permitirán que Muchas Familias Eviten la Separación Prolongada

WASHINGTON, DC — Muchos inmigrantes en el proceso de obtener la residencia permanente a través del patrocinio de cónyuges o padres ciudadanos de EE.UU. ya no tendrán que someterse a una separación prolongada de sus familias, si una propuesta de la administración Obama se implementa. La administración Obama anunció hoy una propuesta con sentido común para actualizar el sistema de inmigración, permitiendo que los inmigrantes con familiares con ciudadanía estadounidense que son elegibles para la exención de las multas de 3 – y 10 años por su “presencia indocumentada” presenten sus solicitudes en los Estados Unidos en lugar de tener que regresar a su país de origen y permanecer allí durante varios meses mientras sus solicitudes de exención se procesan. Este cambio podría beneficiar a muchas familias inmigrantes de bajos recursos. A continuación está la declaración de Marielena Hincapié, directora ejecutiva del Centro Nacional de Leyes de Inmigración (National Immigration Law Center):

“Hoy, la administración Obama reconoció correctamente que la unidad familiar nunca debe ser sacrificada por la burocracia. Hasta ahora, muchos cónyuges y padres ciudadanos estadounidenses que deseaban ajustar el estatus de sus seres queridos se enfrentaban con una decisión salomónica: el riesgo de que un ser querido regrese a su país de origen para presentar una solicitud, y enfrentarse con una separación de hasta 10 años, o seguir viviendo juntos con el miedo constante de la posibilidad de ser deportados. Las leyes actuales de inmigración no tienen sentido para aquellos que buscan mantener a las familias unidas y a las comunidades fuertes.

“Una burocracia gubernamental que obliga a las madres y padres a separarse de sus hijos está simplemente fuera de sintonía con nuestros valores familiares más arraigados. El anuncio de hoy es un paso positivo para las familias inmigrantes, pero sabemos que la reforma integral sólo puede realizarse por acción del Congreso.

“Esta política razonable puede y debe ir todavía mas allá y extenderle la misma consideración a las familias de residentes permanentes, que también pueden solicitar la residencia permanente para sus cónyuges e hijos, pero actualmente no pueden hacerlo sin tener que sufrir una separación prolongada de sus familiares bajo estas multas de 3- y 10 años.

“Este importante cambio propuesto por la administración Obama aún no está en pie. Es importante que los miembros de la comunidad inmigrante sean muy cuidadosos de no caer como victimas de fraude de notarios u otros que afirman que éste anuncio representa un beneficio de inmigración que está disponible inmediatamente. Hasta que la regla propuesta por la administración Obama sea finalizada, no hay ningún beneficio de inmigración. Pero una vez que esta propuesta se convierta en ley, no hay duda que tendrá un impacto tremendo para muchas familias estadounidenses compuestas por ciudadanos estadounidenses e inmigrantes indocumentados”.

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