Last November, President Obama announced several executive actions with respect to immigration. Specifically, the President announced the following immigration executive actions:
- The implementation of a Southern Border and Approaches Campaign Strategy designed to strengthen border security;
- Revisions to removal and deportation policies in order to prioritize the deportation of national security threats, convicted felons, gang members, and illegal entrants apprehended at the border, followed by a second-tier priority for those convicted of multiple misdemeanors, and third-tier priority for non-criminals who have failed to abide by a final order of removal on or after January 1, 2014;
- Discontinuation of the Secure Communities Program, which will be replaced with the Priority Enforcement Program to closely and clearly reflect the revised deportation and removal priorities;
- Support for job series realignment and premium ability pay coverage for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers engaged in removal operations;
- Expansion of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program to broaden eligibility to those who were under 31 years of age on June 15, 2012, who entered the US before June 15, 2007, and who were under 16 years old when they entered;
- Extension of deferred action to parents of US citizens and lawful permanent residents;
- Expansion of provisional waivers to include spouses and children of lawful permanent residents;
- Revisions to parole rules to identify the conditions under which talented entrepreneurs may be eligible for parole into the US;
- Enhanced access to citizenship by allowing the use of credit cards as a payment option for naturalization fee; and
- Implementation of administrative actions to enable US businesses to hire and retain highly-skilled foreign workers.
Although the President announced such executive actions last fall, the actions require legislative action to take full effect, and The Wall Street Journal recently reported that House Republicans plan to “vote in the coming week on an expansive rollback of President Barack Obama’s immigration policy, subjecting more illegal immigrants to deportation and unraveling policies that prioritize removing criminals and recent border crossers.” Accordingly, the implementation of the executive actions is still somewhat uncertain.
Contact an Immigration Lawyer
The immigration attorneys at the Shapiro Law Group are closely monitoring developments regarding immigration policies, and will provide updates as additional legislative and regulatory actions are taken.
The Chicago immigration lawyers at the Shapiro Law Group stand ready and able to help foreign nationals seek deferred action or obtain the necessary immigration documents that they need. We support immigration reform, which is designed to make the immigration system more efficient and effective. If you would like additional information about the President’s executive orders on immigration, contact our office at (847)564-0712 to speak with an immigration attorney.