Presentation on theme: "The Rights of the Unaccompanied Alien Children and the Duties of Federal, State, and Local Governments 3:00 P.M. T & U Non-Immigrant Visas Kristin Zipple-Shedd,"— Presentation transcript:
The Rights of the Unaccompanied Alien Children and the Duties of Federal, State, and Local Governments 3:00 P.M. T & U Non-Immigrant Visas Kristin Zipple-Shedd, Supervising Attorney, Catholic Charities Maurice Hew, Clinic Director and Professor of Law, Thurgood Marshall School of Law Michelle Permenter, Director of Victim Witness Unit, Harris Co. District Attorney’s Office Houston Community College 5601 West Loop Houston Texas July 31, 2o14
Catholic Charities Cabrini Center for Immigrant Legal Assistance Kristin Zipple-Shedd Human Trafficking and the T Visa
Forms of Human Trafficking 1. Forced commercial sexual exploitation: “The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for the purpose of a commercial sex act, in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person forced to perform such an act is under the age of 18 years.” 2. Forced labor: “The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage or slavery.” 22 U.S.C. § 7102(8)
Elements of Human Trafficking Force Physical beatings Sexual Violence (rape) Drug/Alcohol abuse Withholding of documents Deprivation (lack of food/water) Physical restraint Confinement/Isolation Fraud False documents False offers of employment (American dream enticement) Deception Coercion Debt bondage (repayment of expenses) Psychological Abuse Control through threats of violence to victim or victim’s family reporting to immigration officials
Two UAC HT Survivors “Juan” left his home in Honduras due to extreme poverty at the age of 7 and lived on the streets until he came to the U.S. at age 13. After entering the U.S., Juan walked from Laredo to El Paso where he met Mr. B, who offered him food and shelter. He worked on the ranch and in the family business from 5am until 6pm seven days a week, lived in unsanitary conditions without enough food or water, and feared for his life. “Sandra” came to the U.S. with her boyfriend, who promised her work caring for his aunt’s children. However, after they arrived in Houston, he left her with his aunt, who forced her to work at a cantina to pay off a debt she didn’t know she had accrued until after she arrived. Sandra endured physical, sexual, verbal, and emotional abuse as her perpetrators forced her to work 12 hours a day doing things at the cantina that continue to haunt her.
Purpose of T (and U Visas) Humanitarian/Protection of Victims Public Interest Encourages victims to cooperate with law enforcement and facilitates trust between police and immigrant community Holds perpetrators accountable
Immigration Remedies for HT Victim: Continued Presence Temporary authorized stay in the U.S. One year, can be renewed Valid only as long as the government deems it necessary Employment authorization Not a path to permanent status 22 U.S.C. § 7105(c)(3)
Immigration Remedies: T Visa Lawful T visa status for 4 years, INA § 214(o)(7) If law enforcement certifies that victim’s presence is necessary, status may be extended Employment Authorization, 8 C.F.R. § 214.11(l)(4) Same benefits to derivative beneficiaries Possibility of adjustment to Legal Permanent Residency
Immigration Remedies: T Visa Requirements 1. Victim of severe form of trafficking in persons, 2. Physically present in the United States on account of human trafficking or the investigation of human trafficking, 3. Suffer extreme hardship involving unusual and severe harm if removed from the United States, and 4. Cooperate with Law Enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of trafficking, unless victim is under 18 or waiver
Element 1: Victim of Severe Form of Trafficking Involuntary Servitude. 22 U.S.C. §7102(5) (2008); see 18 U.S.C. §1584. Peonage. See 18 U.S.C. §1581. Debt Bondage. 22 U.S.C. §7102(4). Slavery. See 18 U.S.C. §1583. Forced Labor. See 18 U.S.C. §1589. Forced Commercial Sex Act. 22 U.S.C. §7102(8)(a).
Element 2: Physically Present on Account of Trafficking Present because s/he was trafficked, Present because s/he recently escaped from a trafficking scheme, or Present in the US as direct result of past trafficking Even one trip back to home country can eliminate T ‐ visa option. 8 U.S.C. §1101(a)(15)(T)(i)(I) (2008); 8 C.F.R. §214.11(g) (2008).I
Element Three: Extreme Hardship Age and Personal Circumstances Physical or Mental Illness Trafficking ‐ Related Physical or Psychological Consequences Loss of Access to Courts Laws, Social Practices, or Customs of Home Country Risk to Physical Safety or of Being Re-victimized 8 C.F.R. §214.11(i)
Element Four: Cooperation with Law Enforcement I-914, Supplement B, Declaration of Law Enforcement Officer for Victim of Trafficking in Persons (uscis.gov) Victimization Investigation and/or Prosecution Victim’s Cooperation with Law Enforcement Unlike the U Visa, certification is not required (although good as it is primary evidence of cooperation) Secondary Evidence Victim Declaration Communication with Law Enforcement Copies of Correspondence Affidavit from Liaison
T (and U) Visa Derivative Family Members Two main rules: Must be a qualifying family member Must be admissible, and not culpable in the qualifying crime Victim over 21 Spouse, children (under 21 and unmarried) Victim under 21 Spouse, children (under 21 and unmarried), unmarried siblings under 18, parents The Applicant may apply for Derivatives who live in the US or abroad. If the derivative lives abroad, he/she will need to go through consular processing in order to enter the US.
Trafficking Information and Referral Hotline 1-888-3737-888
Contact Information Kristin Zipple-Shedd Supervising Attorney, Crime Victims Program firstname.lastname@example.org 713-875-6550
U Visa Summary Requirements 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(15(U) ; INA § 101(a)(15)(U), 8 CFR §214.14 Victim of a statutorily-listed crime in violation of U.S. law or in US territories or possessions Rape, torture, trafficking, incest, dom. violence, sexual assault, abusive sexual contact, prostitution, sexual exploitation, FGM, being held hostage, peonage, involuntary servitude, slave trade, kidnapping, abduction, false imprisonment, blackmail, extortion, manslaughter, murder, felonious assault, witness tampering, obstruction of justice, perjury… …or attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to commit any of the above-mentioned crimes, or any similar activity in violation of federal, state or local criminal law INA §101(a)(15)(U)(iii) Helpfulness in a criminal investigation or prosecution. Substantial physical or mental abuse. Law enforcement certification of helpfulness – INA § 214(p)(1). Unlike the T, I 918 B certification form required for approval of U status.
CERTIFYING AGENCY A Federal, state, or local law enforcement agency, prosecutor, judge, or other authority responsible for the investigation or prosecution of a qualifying crime or criminal activity. 8 CFR §214.14 (a)(2) 6 month rule-the certification must be signed within the six months immediately preceding the filing. 8 CFR§214.14 (c)(2)(ii)
FAMILY MEMBERS 8 CFR § 214.14(a)(10) If victim 21 years of age or older- Spouse and or children If victim 21 years of age or younger Spouse, children, parents, unmarried siblings under the age of 18
INADMISSIBILITY BENEFITS Under INA § 212(d)(14) all grounds of inadmissibility may be waived for U nonimmigrant applicants EXCEPT INA § 212(a)(3)(E) Nazi persecution, genocide, torture, extrajudicial killing Waiver standard Discretionary If in the public or national interest
U VISA Benefits ADMINISTRATIVE Lawful immigration status for a four-year duration unless more time required for investigation or prosecution - INA § 214(p)(6) Can file an I-539 to extend status Derivative family member cannot be issued duration longer than principal U visa is a temporary visa. Can seek permanent residency status, after the U. Employment authorization. Continued Presence
U VISA BENEFITS Removal Proceedings Administrative stay of removal order INA § 237(d) Administrative closure or joint motion to terminate removal proceedings for one who has established a prima facie case for a T or a U 8 CFR § 214.14(c)(ii) Termination of removal proceedings for one whose T or U is approved. Criminal Proceedings Termination of criminal proceedings
Contact Information Maurice Hew, Jr.* Clinic Director and Associate Professor of Law Thurgood Marshall School of Law 3100 Cleburne Street Houston, TX 77004 713.313.7275(tel) 713.313.1191(fax) *Board Certified, Immigration and Nationality Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization
Harris County District Attorney’s Office Victim Witness Division Michelle Permenter T and U Non-Immigrant Visas Working with the Immigrant Community
Why Provide a Certification? Identify and prosecute criminals Encourage reporting of crime Overcome obstacles to victim cooperation Provide humanitarian relief
What Obstacles are faced in Obtaining the Law Enforcement Certification? Agency does not have certification policy Misunderstandings and misperceptions certifying agencies have about the process
Does the Harris County District Attorney’s Office have a Policy? Will review only cases where charges are filed and are pending or disposed cases up to three years post disposition date.
Contact Information Michelle Permenter, Director Victim Witness Division Harris County District Attorney’s Office email@example.com Work (713) 755-6655 Fax (713) 755-0452 firstname.lastname@example.org