Earlier this year, the Trump administration made it clear that they were formulating a plan to crack down on undocumented immigration by using a variety of controversial methods that were unheard of during the Obama presidency. In late February (2017), the Administration issued a pair of memos regarding its intended approach to revamping the current immigration policies, the AP reports. New policies aim to tighten laws and increase the federal crackdown on undocumented immigrants. Here are a few takeaways from the memos.
Sending Undocumented Persons Back to Mexico
A memo the Trump Administration issued to Border Patrol states that it will use existing U.S. laws to send immigrants found crossing the border back to the Mexico even if they are in fact immigrants from other nations. While the law is vague on whether the U.S. could force Mexico to retain immigrants from other nations, it does allow for the U.S. to crackdown on sending Mexican immigrants back across the border.
Hiring More Border Patrol Agents
Trump also has plans to hire more Border Patrol agents. According to a recent NPR report, the Administration is seeking to hire as many as 15,000 additional Border Patrol and ICE agents to enforce immigration laws. This is in spite of the fact that agents doubled in size from around to 10,000 to more than 21,000 during the past two Administrations.
Prioritizing Criminals & Suspects
During his campaign, Trump promised to be swift in his deportation of undocumented criminals and suspects. This has been seen in the increase of recent ICE raids on businesses and homes, and the influx of undocumented immigrants with criminal records being deported. Even immigrants who have minor offenses, such as a misdemeanor or unpaid traffic tickets, are being deported under this new Administration’s immigration policy. As the statistics pour in, news agencies are reporting that less than half of undocumented immigrants who were deported under this policy since January had criminal records.
Local Police & Immigration Enforcement
President Obama ended an era where local police were required to check the immigration status of those they arrested. But under the Trump Administration, they want to “empower police to enforce federal immigration laws,” via an Executive Order, that effectively deputizes local police forces and instructs them to detain and deport any undocumented immigrants that are entered into the system. This Order is thought to directly target so-called “sanctuary cities,” where police previously ignored the federal immigration status of suspects when they were arrested for minor offenses.
What Could This Mean for Undocumented Parents & Children?
Trump’s new focus on immigration law could mean a lot for both undocumented parents and their children. It could reverse Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which allows for children of undocumented immigrants who were brought to the country and raised here to be ineligible for citizenship status. Given that most of these children have grown up to be law abiding, tax paying adults, many with their own families, the new focus on immigration from the Trump Administration threatens livelihoods and could tear families apart at the seams.
Margaret W. Wong & Associates, LLC is dedicated to providing high quality, efficient, and prompt services to both companies and individuals in immigration to the United States. Schedule a consultation by calling (216) 566-9908 or Contact Us today.