Category Archives: News Releases

National Immigration Law Center Responds to Introduction of U.S. Citizenship Act

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 18, 2021

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

National Immigration Law Center Responds to Introduction of U.S. Citizenship Act

WASHINGTON — Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and U.S. Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA) today introduced the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 in the Senate and House of Representatives, respectively. The bill, which President Joe Biden sent to Congress on his first day in office, would provide a pathway to U.S. citizenship to an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the U.S., including a fast track for agricultural workers and for people with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), temporary protected status (TPS), or deferred enforced departure (DED).

Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement:

“The U.S. Citizenship Act would provide a path to citizenship to approximately 11 million undocumented people whose home is here and who are essential members of our communities, and begin to address root causes of immigration. It would also strengthen protections for all workers, remove barriers to family-based immigration, place limits on dangerously overbroad executive authority to issue bans on people entering the U.S., restore asylum and other humanitarian forms of relief, and replace the term “alien” with “noncitizen” in our immigration law.

“We at the National Immigration Law Center welcome this shift in approach, which breaks with decades of immigration reform proposals that tethered long-overdue relief to punitive measures that are harmful to our communities as a whole. This bill marks a significant step as we continue working to reclaim our nation’s role as a beacon of hope for people around the world seeking a better life. We thank Senator Menendez, Representative Sanchez, and the Biden White House for their leadership in swiftly bringing this historic bill forward.

“Millions of immigrants are doing essential work to help us get through the pandemic and are in urgent need of stability and relief. We urge members of Congress to move swiftly to provide undocumented members of our communities with a pathway to citizenship, including a fast-track for those eligible for DACA, TPS, or DED, and for essential workers and farmworkers.

“While there is much to celebrate in this bill, we are concerned with the potential that increased use of technology at the border will lead to more surveillance and harmful enforcement. We are also disappointed that at a time when the pandemic has shown us how interdependent we all are, Democrats are still excluding immigrants from access to health care and other vital services while on their path to citizenship. The vision articulated by President Biden for an immigration system that lives up to our country’s needs and values in the 21st century — one that advances racial and economic equity and justice — requires that Congress work to enact a fully inclusive bill that provides everyone in our communities with the freedom to thrive. Our collective health and well-being depends on full immigrant inclusion.”

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NILC Executive Director Marielena Hincapié Advocates for Bold Immigration Reforms in Congressional Testimony

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 11, 2021

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

NILC Executive Director Marielena Hincapié Advocates for Bold Immigration Reforms in Congressional Testimony

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, testified today before the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship. Hincapié’s statement is below:

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Chair Lofgren, Ranking Member McClintock, and members of the subcommittee: Thank you for the opportunity to testify.

I am here today because my parents — Arturo and Teresa moved from Colombia to work in Rhode Island’s textile factories to give their 10 children better opportunities. Today, my family includes educators; health professionals; entrepreneurs; emerging leaders in finance, climate, and engineering fields; and students.

I am a naturalized citizen, a lawyer, and the executive director of the National Immigration Law Center. We believe all of us — regardless of where we were born, how much money we have, or the color of our skin — should have the freedom to thrive.

We are at a pivotal moment in our nation.

A historic number of voters, ranging from Black women to naturalized citizens, voted for a president who would unify our nation and reclaim the United States’ position as a beacon of hope. They voted for an economy that gives everyone, including immigrants, a fair shot. And they voted with increasing recognition that immigrants are keeping our country running through the pandemic and doing their part to keep our loved ones healthy and cared for.

We are at the beginning of a new era. Together, with the combined efforts of the Biden administration and congressional leadership, we must deliver on the promise that our nation has held for previous generations.

We must recognize: Immigrants are essential. The Biden administration and Congress should know that including immigrants in building a better future is not only morally and economically sound, but also carries strong bipartisan support from voters across the political spectrum.

Today we will focus on the need for bold reforms, but I’ll first share a few stories of the people whose lives and humanity make them essential to our country.

Dr. Abudu, from Ghana, works as an emergency room physician in California. He came to the U.S. as a teenager and is saving lives every day. He says working in health care during the pandemic is “hell, and it is heartbreaking.” Last month, one of his coworkers — also a physician — died of COVID. Yet Dr. Abudu shows up for work, risking his own life to save others.

Catherine ‘Ofa Mann, from Tonga, is educating Pacific Islander communities about COVID and working to reduce transmission rates, while encouraging those who need it to seek care despite their fears. In her words, “They take care of their own. Because they heard that people go to the hospital and they die.”

Saul Sanchez, from Mexico lived in Colorado and proudly worked at a meat processing plant for years to provide for his family. Mr. Sanchez was hospitalized in the very hospital where his daughter works as a nurse. He died from COVID. His family was unable to tell him they loved him before he took his final breath.

Like them, there are millions more whom you will impact through your actions.

The status quo is simply not acceptable. In the third decade of the 21st century, we’re still stuck in a 1980s immigration system. We must find a new way forward.

We need 21st century immigration policies that begin to address root causes so that people have the freedom to remain in their home countries and also that create legal channels for people to move to the U.S. to be reunited with loved ones or pursue an education or employment opportunities.

Our immigration system must advance racial, economic, and gender justice, equity, and inclusion. It’s time to end the dynamic of having immigration status function as the gatekeeper to accessing basic necessities and rights for all.

We applaud President Biden’s vision set forth in the U.S. Citizenship Act.

We call on congressional leadership and members of this subcommittee to support the swift passage of bold, inclusive bills that will provide a pathway to citizenship without punitive provisions. Congress must also recognize the essential workers who are critical to our recovery and place them on a fast track to citizenship.

The urgency is clear. Each day without legislative solutions causes suffering not only for immigrants but also for their U.S. citizen families, employers, schools, local communities, and our country.

Today’s immigrants are simply seeking the same opportunities that generations of immigrants like my parents and many of your families and ancestors had before them: the chance to build a better future.

This is a time for moral imagination and leadership as we work to safeguard and strengthen our democracy, heal from racial inequalities and injustices, and recover from this global pandemic that has reminded us how interdependent we all are.

The time is now. Immigrants are essential for the soul of America. And so we must act boldly together to make good on the promise of America.

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Watch a recording of the hearing at https://judiciary.house.gov/calendar/eventsingle.aspx?EventID=3531.

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National Immigration Law Center Responds to the Reintroduction of the Dream Act in the U.S. Senate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 4, 2021

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

National Immigration Law Center Responds to the Reintroduction of the Dream Act in the U.S. Senate

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) today reintroduced the bipartisan Dream Act, legislation that would provide a pathway to U.S. citizenship for undocumented immigrant youth. The National Immigration Law Center was involved in drafting the original Dream Act and has advocated for its enactment ever since the bill was first introduced in 2001.

Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement:

“At the National Immigration Law Center, we’ve been working alongside immigrant youth for over two decades to ensure they can remain and thrive here, in the country that is their home. The Dream Act would provide much-needed stability and open up opportunities for many young immigrants in our communities.

“We welcome the reintroduction of the Dream Act, especially at a time when even those with temporary protections under DACA continue to face the threat of politically motivated anti-immigrant attacks in court. We applaud Sen. Durbin, who has been a staunch champion for immigrant youth, and are heartened that lawmakers from both sides of the aisle continue to recognize the urgent need and overwhelming public support for a permanent solution. However, we also know the Dream Act is only the beginning.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored how interdependent we all are, and immigrants have been at the forefront of the pandemic response, caring for the sick, harvesting our nation’s food, and keeping businesses running. We urge Congress to create a pathway to U.S. citizenship not just for immigrant youth, but for all 11 million undocumented immigrants who call our country home, including a fast track for essential workers who have helped us survive during a global pandemic.”

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The National Immigration Law Center and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund Commend President Biden’s Actions to Improve the Lives of Immigrants

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 2, 2021

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

The National Immigration Law Center and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund Commend President Biden’s Actions to Improve the Lives of Immigrants

WASHINGTON – President Biden is expected to sign several new immigration executive actions today, including one instructing federal agencies to review the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s “public charge” rule and related policies. Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center and the NILC Immigrant Justice Fund, issued the following statement:

“In his first days in office, President Biden has sent a clear signal that his administration sees immigrants as a strength to this country. The National Immigration Law Center celebrates the Biden administration’s policies that recognize the dignity of immigrants and their essential role in our communities. We applaud the president for moving quickly to begin undoing harms done by the previous administration while putting us on a path to a more immigrant-inclusive vision for America.

“President Biden is taking critical steps to end the harmful and racist wealth tests for immigrants, including the previous administration’s public charge regulations.

“These policies sought to redefine who we are as a country and who belongs here. Beginning to undo them is a necessary step toward reclaiming our position as a beacon of hope for people all around the world who seek safety and opportunity. It’s also key to our recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The pandemic has underscored how interdependent we all are, and immigrants have been at the forefront of the pandemic response, caring for the sick, harvesting our nation’s food, and keeping businesses running. The last administration’s dangerous policies sowed fear and confusion, preventing immigrants and their families from accessing critical health care, food, and financial relief at a time when it’s needed most.

“Over the last four years, the National Immigration Law Center worked alongside hundreds of partners across the country to fight back against these harmful policies. NILC founded and co-led the Protecting Immigrant Families campaign that resulted in more than 250,000 comments from the public opposing the DHS public charge regulation. NILC fought in court to block their implementation. And we worked with directly impacted communities to minimize the chilling effect of these policies.

“Today’s actions will also set in motion the critical work of reuniting children separated from their parents as a result of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy. The Biden administration also is reestablishing the Task Force on New Americans, an important step towards creating a National Office of New Americans, which will be key to ensuring a whole-government approach to immigrant inclusion and equity.

“As we celebrate the reversal of harmful immigration policies, we urge Congress to also create a pathway to U.S. citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, including essential workers who have helped us survive during a global pandemic, who call our country home, and begin the work of living up to America’s promise.”

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Federal Court Allows Workers’ Claims to Proceed in Lawsuit Challenging Major ICE Workplace Raid

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 2, 2021

CONTACT
Juan Gastelum, NILC, [email protected], (213) 375-3149
Jeff Migliozzi, SPLC, [email protected], (334) 303-1261

Federal Court Allows Workers’ Claims to Proceed in Lawsuit Challenging Major ICE Workplace Raid

A federal court acknowledged the validity of claims by workers detained because of the color of their skin in new order that greenlights majority of plaintiffs’ claims

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — On Sunday, January 31, a federal judge largely allowed a lawsuit challenging an April 2018 immigration raid to proceed, denying in part the federal government’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit. The raid took place at an East Tennessee meat processing plant and was at the time the largest workplace raid in nearly a decade. The plaintiffs allege that armed federal law enforcement officers used militaristic tactics and illegally targeted Latinx workers.

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee denied the government’s request to dismiss class claims alleging that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conspired with the Tennessee Highway Patrol to violate the equal protection rights of the workers detained in the raid. The plaintiffs’ individual claims of excessive force and all of their Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) claims will move forward in the litigation.

In dismissing some of the plaintiffs’ claims, the court stated that its hands were tied due to certain Supreme Court precedent, even though the plaintiffs alleged illegal conduct, and called on higher courts to “recognize causes of action that more directly address agents’ searches and seizures based on skin color.”

“The lawsuit addresses the brutality and racial profiling the workers faced at the hands of government agents, but the human costs of this unconscionable abuse of power extend much further. Mass worksite raids are deeply disruptive to local communities, leaving children stranded without their parents, terrifying entire communities, and devastating local economies,” noted Lisa Sherman-Nikolaus, executive director of the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition. “We hope this lawsuit will bring some measure of justice for the workers whose rights were violated in a raid that was designed to instill fear in immigrant communities.”

“The court’s decision acknowledges the racism and unconstitutionality of the federal government’s conduct during the Southeastern Provision raid. This is the very sort of racial profiling that immigrant communities have warned is inherent in worksite raids,” said Araceli Martínez-Olguín, a supervising attorney with the National Immigration Law Center (NILC). “We will continue to work with our clients to hold the federal government responsible and to help ensure that worksite raids again become a thing of the past.”

“What happened the day of the raid was law enforcement overreach, plain and simple,” said Meredith Stewart, a senior supervising attorney with the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). “Our laws protect people from exactly this type of misconduct — you cannot arrest someone solely on the basis of their race. Not only is this the law, but a shared value rooted in the Bill of Rights that we should ensure applies to all people.  We are eager for our clients to have their day in court.”

In 2019, NILC, SPLC, and the law firm of Sherrard, Roe, Voigt & Harbison, along with pro bono attorneys at Skadden, Arps, filed the lawsuit on behalf of seven individuals and a class of workers detained in the raid during which ICE agents detained every worker whom they judged looked Latinx while allowing the white workers to roam free.

Read the full memorandum opinion here.

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Established in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) is one of the leading organizations in the U.S. exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights of immigrants with low income. For more information, visit www.nilc.org.

The Southern Poverty Law Center is a catalyst for racial justice in the South and beyond, working in partnership with communities to dismantle white supremacy, strengthen intersectional movements, and advance the human rights of all people. For more information, visit www.splcenter.org.

The Tennessee Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) is a statewide, immigrant and refugee-led collaboration whose mission is to empower immigrants and refugees throughout Tennessee to develop a unified voice, defend their rights, and create an atmosphere in which they are recognized as positive contributors to the state. For more information, visit www.tnimmigrant.org.

Statement on Immigration Executive Orders Issued by Newly Inaugurated President Biden

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 20, 2021

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

NILC and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund Statement on Immigration Executive Orders Issued by Newly Inaugurated President Biden

WASHINGTON — Upon the inauguration of Joe Biden as 46th president of the United States and the subsequent issuing of executive orders and announcement of proposed legislation addressing immigration policy, Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) and the NILC Immigrant Justice Fund, issued the following statement:

“The inauguration of President Joseph R. Biden and Vice President Kamala D. Harris marks a new day for our country and for our shared humanity. We at the National Immigration Law Center are celebrating with renewed hope and resolve to continue working toward a more just, inclusive, and equitable society, where all of us have the freedom to thrive. We are encouraged by the Biden administration’s commitment to improving the lives of immigrants, which was demonstrated today with decisive actions on his first day in office.

“President Biden is fulfilling a campaign promise to restore hope and stability through DACA to more than a million immigrant youth who call this country home. We celebrate this hard-fought victory alongside our courageous plaintiffs, partners, and communities, who over the years have fought, all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, repeated attempts to end this transformative policy. We remain committed to working toward a permanent solution for immigrant youth and all immigrants whose home is here until they have a path to U.S. citizenship.

“On the day the first Muslim ban was issued, NILC was on the ground working with affected individuals. As thousands of people flocked to airports to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with their Muslim neighbors, we successfully filed the first lawsuit to challenge and block its implementation that same weekend, which was the first of many of our legal victories over the last four years. Now, President Biden, in keeping with his campaign promise, has rescinded the Muslim ban and, in doing so, has helped our nation take an important step in reclaiming our role as a beacon of hope for all seeking a better life.

“This moment was made possible by the hard work and leadership of a multiracial and multigenerational coalition of voters who resoundingly and decisively rejected the hatred and division of the last four years. The Biden administration now has the mandate and the political power to transform our nation’s immigration policies while undoing four years of destructive and harmful actions.

“We look forward to our ongoing partnership with the Biden administration to implement a boldly pro-immigrant agenda, which must include a pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented people who call this country home and immediate financial relief, access to health care, and other support for all families struggling under the weight of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Finally, for our collective well-being, we must recognize that there is no economic or public health recovery without immigrants. Immigrants have played an essential role at the forefront of this pandemic, and must be included in economic relief and in access to health care and vaccines. We’re optimistic that this is something the Biden administration understands and will work to address within its first hundred days in office.

“As we celebrate today’s victories, we are mindful of all the pain, suffering, and loss we have collectively experienced under the last administration, and we remain resolute to doing our part to help our country heal, rebuild, and achieve justice and equity.”

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Federal Court Blocks Dramatic Immigration Courts Fee Increases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 19, 2021

CONTACT
– Juan Gastelum, National Immigration Law Center, 213-375-3149, [email protected]
– Maria Frausto, American Immigration Council, 202-507-7526, [email protected]

Federal Court Blocks Dramatic Immigration Courts Fee Increases

WASHINGTON — A federal court Monday blocked nearly all of a Trump administration rule that would have drastically increased fees in immigration proceedings in which the government seeks to deport immigrants, many of whom are long-term residents of the U.S.

The fee-increase rule, scheduled to take effect today, would have increased the filing fees for applications, appeals, and motions in removal proceedings by as much as nearly 800 percent. The substantial increases would have immediately denied access to justice for economically disadvantaged individuals seeking a fair day in court.

The National Immigration Law Center, the American Immigration Council, and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher challenged the rule. The lawsuit, CLINIC v. EOIR, was filed on behalf of immigrants’ rights organizations and legal services providers Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC), Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), Community Legal Services in East Palo Alto (CLSEPA), and the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA).

The following reaction is from:

Lisa Graybill, legal director, National Immigration Law Center: “We are glad the court has intervened to halt the outgoing Trump administration’s unlawful last-ditch effort to price immigrants facing deportation out of due process. We urge the incoming administration to take all necessary steps to reverse these ill-conceived measures and give everyone facing deportation a fair day in court.”

Kate Melloy Goettel, legal director, litigation, American Immigration Council: “Yet again, the court rejected the administration’s shoddy rule-making, this time halting a pernicious rule that would have imposed a ‘wealth test’ on immigrants seeking a fair day in court. Without today’s ruling, the new fees would have meant increased deportations for many low-income immigrants for no other reason than their inability to afford access to the courts.”

Michelle Mendez, director, Defending Vulnerable Populations program, Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc: “CLINIC, our affiliates, and our clients welcome this preliminary injunction as a much-needed moment of pause. It is not easy for low-income people to navigate the legal system, let alone as immigrants confronted by the incredibly complex immigration system, where the stakes are so high. The outcomes of their removal cases literally determine whether they can remain in this country, contributing to their families and communities, or be forced to leave their homes and loved ones forever. Sometimes, the outcomes literally mean the difference between life and death. Raising the price of access to immigration court would deny justice to many human beings, and we are grateful that this unjust act has been stopped, for now. The court recognized that the proposed fee increases would prejudice immigrants’ access to counsel, and delay or deny them justice.”

Richard Mark, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP: “The court’s decision recognizes that Congress intended for pro bono and low-cost legal services to be available to assist people facing removal proceedings. As a consequence, when EOIR sought to increase fees, it was obligated to respond to concerns about the impact of fee increases on these providers ‘in a meaningful way, not blithely dismiss them as outside the limited scope of this rulemaking.’” Added Joseph Evall, also of Gibson Dunn: “The court concluded that EOIR’s failure to consider these important concerns violated the Administrative Procedure Act. And because the increased fees would cause harm throughout the country, the court entered a nationwide injunction, rejecting defendants’ efforts to cabin the relief just to plaintiffs.”

The court’s ruling is available at https://www.nilc.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/CLINIC-v-EOIR-opinion-and-order-2021-01-18.pdf.

Plaintiffs’ litigation team includes Katherine Melloy Goettel and Emma Winger of the American Immigration Council; Robin Goldfaden, Michelle Lapointe, and Meredith Cabell of the National Immigration Law Center; and Richard Mark, Joseph Evall, Katherine Marquart, Anthony Moreno, Laura Mumm, Julianne Duran, Vladimir Semendyai, Alexandra Perloff-Giles, Ramona Lin, Josh Obear, Nanding Chen, Jialin Yang, and Kevin Reilly of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP.

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Founded in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center is the leading advocacy organization in the United States exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights and opportunities of low-income immigrants and their loved ones. NILC’s mission is grounded in the belief that everyone living in the U.S. — regardless of race, gender/gender identity, immigration, and economic status — should have equal access to justice, resources, and educational and economic opportunities that enable them to achieve their full human potential. NILC is committed to advancing its mission — which intersects race, immigration status, and class — through a racial, economic, and gender justice and equity orientation. NILC seeks to achieve just laws and policies that address systemic inequities, create narrative and culture change for an inclusive and equitable society, and build a healthier and more powerful movement.

The American Immigration Council works to strengthen America by shaping how America thinks about and acts towards immigrants and immigration and by working toward a more fair and just immigration system that opens its doors to those in need of protection and unleashes the energy and skills that immigrants bring. The Council brings together problem solvers and employs four coordinated approaches to advance change — litigation, research, legislative and administrative advocacy, and communications. Follow the latest Council news and information on ImmigrationImpact.com and Twitter @immcouncil.

NILC and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund Statement on Key Domestic Policy Council Immigration Appointments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 14, 2021

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

NILC and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund Statement on Key Domestic Policy Council Immigration Appointments

WASHINGTON — Upon the announcement that President-elect Joe Biden has made two key immigration appointments to the White House Domestic Policy Council, Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) and the NILC Immigrant Justice Fund, issued the following statement:

“The appointments of Esther Olavarria as deputy director for immigration and Tyler Moran as special assistant to the president for immigration are exciting and welcome developments as the incoming Biden administration continues to build its team. These appointments signal a new day for immigrants, who will have strong champions and allies in the White House in Olavarria and Moran.

“Both Olavarria and Moran have decades of experience working to improve the lives of immigrants through their legal and policy work. Olavarria brings her unparalleled expertise on the complex immigration issues that need to be addressed, coupled with her own immigrant experience. Moran brings a wealth of expertise on a range of issues impacting immigrants from her past work with key stakeholders at the federal, state, and local levels.

“NILC applauds these appointments, and we are especially pleased that Moran, who formerly served as NILC’s federal policy director, will play an instrumental role in developing a pro-immigrant agenda under the Biden administration, including creating a pathway to U.S. citizenship for the 11 million immigrants who call our country home.

“NILC stands ready to partner with and support the work of Olavarria, Moran, and all the leaders announced today in their new roles, both as they work to undo the harm from the last four years and also in designing and implementing a boldly pro-immigrant agenda, so that our nation can again be a beacon for those seeking a better life in our country.”

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NILC Denounces Anti-Democratic Assault on the U.S. Capitol by Trump-incited Mob

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 8, 2021

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

NILC Denounces Anti-Democratic Assault on the U.S. Capitol by Trump-incited Mob

WASHINGTON — Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center and the NILC Immigrant Justice Fund, issued the following statement after a riotous mob of Trump supporters violently attacked the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021:

“The violent mobs attempting to disrupt the democratic process on Wednesday were the direct result of years of divisive rhetoric by Donald Trump and his enablers, rooted in white supremacy and division by race, class, and immigration status. The events that unfolded and the response by law enforcement also openly exposed the inequities in how peaceful protestors of color are treated.

“This was an assault on the will of the American people, who have spoken and overwhelmingly voted for Joe Biden. The election is over. Our nation’s leaders must be united in condemning this violence on our nation’s Capitol and hold those responsible accountable for their actions.

“In just under two weeks, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be sworn in as the next president and vice president of the United States. Democracy has prevailed, but it is frail, and it requires all of us to work together to strengthen it.

“We should learn from the multiracial organizing in Georgia that resulted in the election of two senators who have committed to represent all Georgians. We are witnessing history and look forward to helping rebuild the country so everyone, including immigrants, has the freedom to thrive.”

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Statement on Nomination of Merrick Garland for U.S. Attorney General

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 8, 2021

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

NILC and NILC Immigrant Justice Fund Statement on Nomination of Merrick Garland for U.S. Attorney General

WASHINGTON — On January 8, 2021, Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center and the NILC Immigrant Justice Fund, issued the following statement on the nominations of Judge Merrick Garland for U.S. attorney general, Kristen Clarke for assistant attorney general for Civil Rights, and Vanita Gupta for associate attorney general.

“Merrick Garland is the right person at the right time to lead the U.S. Department of Justice. After four years of lawlessness and devaluing of our country’s moral and ethical code, it is vital that the United States again restore its respect for justice, due process, and equitable enforcement of the laws of our nation.

“As the next attorney general, Merrick Garland will be faced with significant challenges, including legal battles still in the courts over Trump’s anti-immigrant policies. We look forward to working closely with Garland in his capacity as attorney general to restore our country’s moral standing in the world and again become a beacon of hope for those seeking a better life.

“We applaud President-elect Biden’s nominations of top leaders in our legal profession to lead the Department of Justice along with Merrick Garland, including Lisa Monaco, who will be an experienced deputy attorney general and will be able to lead from day one. We at NILC look forward to working with her to reverse the devastating anti-immigrant policies adopted by the Trump administration.

“We are particularly thrilled to have our close colleagues Vanita Gupta and Kristen Clarke also named to the leadership of DOJ. Gupta is an impeccable choice to serve as associate attorney general, having previously led the Civil Rights Division under President Obama. She is exactly the visionary leader we need now more than ever, and the department, and the American people, will be well served by her.

“Clarke is a tireless fighter for civil rights, and she is the right person to lead the department’s Civil Rights Division. The Civil Rights Division will play a key role in restoring the DOJ’s reputation with communities that count on its unwavering commitment to uphold civil and constitutional rights for all, particularly voting rights, which are critical to safeguarding our democracy.”

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