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POST-DEPORTATION HUMAN RIGHTS PROJECT CENTER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS AND INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE BOSTON COLLEGE Returning to the U.S. After Deportation: Hopes &

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Presentation on theme: "POST-DEPORTATION HUMAN RIGHTS PROJECT CENTER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS AND INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE BOSTON COLLEGE Returning to the U.S. After Deportation: Hopes &"— Presentation transcript:

1 POST-DEPORTATION HUMAN RIGHTS PROJECT CENTER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS AND INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE BOSTON COLLEGE Returning to the U.S. After Deportation: Hopes & Hurdles

2 The Post-Deportation Human Rights Project Based at the Center for Human Rights and International Justice at Boston College Provides direct representation to individuals who have been deported Promotes the rights of deportees and their family members through research, legal and policy analysis, advocacy, training programs, and participatory action research.

3 U.S. Deportation Law Anyone who is not a U.S. citizen is at risk of deportation – including long time permanent residents.  Approximately 1 million lawful permanent residents admitted every year (green card holders) Long list of activities that can make someone deportable – immigration violations, criminal conduct, security related grounds.  Expansion of what constitutes an aggravated felony  Aggravated felony = deportation

4 Detention and Deportation in the U.S. Marked increase in detention and deportation of immigrants since the change in immigration law in 1996 and again in the wake of September 11, Detention beds:

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6 Deportations Rapid growth from 50,000 in 1995 to nearly 400,000 in 2010  Almost 1/3 are “expedited removals” and another 1/3 are “reinstatement of removals” – fast track deportation without opportunity to see an immigration judge An additional 476,000 “returned” in 2010 Between 2000 and 2010, about 900,000 people deported based on criminal conduct – some serious but much of it minor (including immigration violations and traffic offenses).

7 Current Climate No comprehensive immigration reform Stepped up enforcement –  Increased detention and deportation  Federal programs that employ local police in enforcing immigration laws  State legislation targeting immigrants Renewed energy from the Administration  Prosecutorial discretion  Length of presence in the US  Family ties  Immigration and criminal history  Review of pending cases (300,000)

8 Effects of Deportation Estimated 4 million U.S. citizen children who live in “mixed status” homes with one or both parents undocumented. Between 1997 and 2007, 88,000 U.S. citizen children (half under the age of 5) lost a legal permanent resident parent to deportation.

9 Post-Deportation Legal Obstacles Long-term lawful permanent residents who were wrongfully deported based on an interpretation of the law that was later overturned Unlawful deportation of U.S. citizens Extra hurdles to challenging a wrongful deportation Hardship to the deportee and the family

10 Challenging a wrongful deportation Thousands deported based on an interpretation of the law that was later found to be incorrect by the U.S. Supreme Court However, there is a regulation that bars individuals from challenging their wrongful deportation after having been deported  Majority of federal courts have found this regulation to be invalid in at least some circumstances  Remains a major obstacle for many Case example -

11 Returning to the U.S. after deportation Many deportees have family members who are U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents in the U.S. Significant challenges to returning permanently:  Ineligible for a visa due to deportation  Activity that led to deportation also likely makes individual ineligible for a new visa  Obtaining special permission to return is possible in some cases – often requires showing “extreme hardship” to family member Temporary visas  Nonimmigrant intent

12 What we are doing Challenging the federal regulation barring challenges to deportation orders after the individual has been deported  Litigation of individual cases  Advocacy Studying the effects of deportation and the threat of deportation on families and children Raising awareness of the legal obstacles faced by those who have been deported


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