09 Jan White House Seeks to End Several Immigration Programs
Washington D.C., January 9, 2018 – The first two weeks of 2018 have started with a large wave of news relating to immigration issues emanating from the White House.
The overall picture that is forming confirms the Trump administration’s intention to curb illegal immigration to the United States, while also limiting legal immigration.
In terms of curbing illegal immigration, the Trump White House has taken steps to end Executive grants of status to undocumented workers:
- In September 2017, the Trump White House ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program which gave temporary work permits to persons brought to the United States as young children by their parents who entered illegally.
- In November 2017, the Trump White House ended Temporary Protected Status for approximately 60,000 Haitian refugees who fled Haiti due to the 2010 earthquake.
- In January 2018, the Department of Homeland Security decided to end Temporary Protected Status for approximately 200,000 Salvadoran citizens as of September 9, 2019. Many Salvadoran citizens fled the U.S. in 2001 due to an earthquake that devastated the country.
- Observers expect the Department of Homeland Security to also end Temporary Protected Status for approximately 90,000 Honduran refugees.
- In January 2018, the Department of Justice announced plans to end the practice by U.S. Immigration Courts to administratively close immigration deportation (removal) cases. This discretionary practice, which has existed for decades, has generally been used to allow an unlawfully present immigrant to seek to remedy their immigration status through legal means. By seeking to end the practice of administrative closure, the Trump administration would require U.S. immigration courts to reopen such cases and reach a final decision on the case. Estimates are that approximately 350,000 persons in immigration court proceedings could be deported under such a new practice.
In terms of limiting legal immigration, the White House has made several proposals to reduce the number of legal immigrants allowed to live and work in the U.S.
- In January 2018, the White House delivered to Congress a wish-list of immigration reforms, that included: (1) ending the green card program for parents of U.S. citizens; (2) ended the Diversity Visa program that gave green cards to 50,000 immigrants from countries that have low emigration to the U.S.
- In January 2018, the Department of Homeland Security made public a proposal to reinterpret American Competitiveness in the Workplace to end the practice of granting 3-year extensions of H-1B skilled worker visas to persons who were completing a work-based green card process in the U.S. (with an approved I-140 visa petition).
- In November 2017, the Regulatory Agenda for the Department of Homeland Security included a proposal to end the practice of granting temporary work permits to certain persons holding H-4 visa status (who are spouses of H-1B skilled workers and who are waiting for the approved green card to become available in the visa waiting list).
I.A. Donoso & Associates, LLC, is a law firm based in Washington, D.C., and is recognized as a leading immigration law firm with recognized expertise in visas for EB-5 investors, professionals and academics.