Headlines: Immigration

Published On: Donate

Immigration officials are teaming up with federal and state prosecutors, the Federal Trade Commission, lawyers’ groups and immigrant advocate organizations in a new nationwide effort to combat an epidemic of schemes by people posing as immigration lawyers. The campaign, which will begin in Washington on Thursday, is an effort by the Obama administration to step up one form of assistance to immigrant communities, which have intensified their criticism of President Obama as they have faced a record pace of deportations in the last two years. [New York Times]

According to a report released Tuesday by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, immigration courts are too slow to keep up with the high number of undocumented immigrants detected by enforcement agencies. Despite an increase in newly hired judges, the number of cases awaiting resolution were at an all-time high of 275,316 in May 2011. The average wait time was 482 days as of May at an average cost of $122 per day. [Huffington Post]

The North Carolina House approved legislation that would require local governments, government contractors and their subcontractors to use the federal E-Verify records system to check newly hired employees. Companies that employ fewer than 25 workers or use seasonal workers who work less than 90 days a year would be exempt from checking immigration status. [Associated Press]

Two former state workers pleaded guilty Monday to their roles in the release of a list of 1,300 purported illegal immigrants that created panic among Utah’s Hispanic community last year who feared they would be unfairly targeted by immigration officials. Teresa Bassett, 59, was sentenced to three years of probation and 250 hours of community service. Leah Carson, 32, will serve one year of probation and pay a $440 fine. [Associated Press]

According to a report released today by the Brookings Institution and based on census data, 30% of the country’s working-age immigrants, regardless of legal status, have at least a bachelor’s degree, while 28% lack a high school diploma. The trend reflects a fundamental change in the structure and demands of the U.S. economy, which in the past decades transformed from an economy driven by manufacturing to one driven by information and technology. The report also offers a new perspective on the national immigration discourse, which tends to fixate on low-skilled, and often illegal, workers. [Washington Post]

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