2015

Denial of Due Process to Incarcerated Immigrant Families Worsens in Spite of Court Ruling

12/24/2015
Attorneys and advocates called the government to account for rushing detained children and mothers through the legal processes designed to protect them from danger; glaring due process violations have led to the deportation of families with valid claims for asylum or other protection under U.S. law.
AILA Doc. No. 15122451

AILA Commends Congress for Avoiding Riders Harming Refugees But Warns Against Discriminatory Visa Waiver Provisions in Funding Bill

12/16/2015
AILA commends Congress for putting forward an omnibus appropriations bill that largely rejected efforts to force through anti-immigrant or anti-refugee proposals, but is deeply disappointed that changes to the Visa Waiver Program will discriminate against nationals of certain countries.
AILA Doc. No. 15121609

CARA: Family Detention System Fails Indigenous Language-Speaking Families

12/10/2015
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project filed a formal complaint today with the DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and the Office of Inspector General detailing the serious obstacles indigenous language speakers are facing in procuring access to justice in family detention centers.
AILA Doc. No. 15121013

CRCL Complaint on Challenges Faced by Indigenous Language Speakers in Family Detention

12/10/2015
A complaint submitted to the DHS Office of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and the Office of Inspector General by the CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project detailing challenges that indigenous language-speaking mothers and children in family detention centers face in procuring access to justice.
AILA Doc. No. 15121011

AILA Condemns Bigoted, Discriminatory Rhetoric

12/8/2015
AILA condemns any proposal that would treat someone differently based upon nationality or religion.
AILA Doc. No. 15120860

AILA: Congress Should Reject H.R. 158 Until Its Visa Waiver Program Changes Are More Carefully Weighed

12/8/2015
AILA expressed concerns regarding the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Prevention Act, H.R. 158, and recommended that Congress vote “NO” on the bill unless modifications and clarifications are made.
AILA Doc. No. 15120800

AILA: Lives of Undocumented Families Now in Supreme Court’s Hands

11/20/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis urged the U.S. Supreme Court “not only to take the case but to rule in favor of the administration” on the implementation of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and the expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals programs.
AILA Doc. No. 15112030

AILA: How President Obama Can Reform Immigration in His Last Year

11/18/2015
AILA issued a report card on President Obama’s immigration efforts over the past seven years and made recommendations. AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis states, “In his final year, President Obama can save thousands of lives, keep families together, and help our economy thrive.”
AILA Doc. No. 15111833

AILA: Backlash Against Refugees Unbefitting of America

11/17/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis calls on the government to support the refugee settlement program, saying Syrian refugees “need protection and assistance, not barred and locked doors, or closed borders."
AILA Doc. No. 15111730

AILA: CBP Drags its Heels on Body-Worn Cameras, Endangering Lives

11/12/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis reacted to the continued delay by CBP on body-worn cameras, saying “It is beyond belief that, given all that we know about the power of video to shine a light on the actions of law enforcement agents and officers, CBP is still dragging its heels on this.”
AILA Doc. No. 15111263

AILA: 5th Circuit Again Treads Disappointing but Not Surprising Path

11/10/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis responded to the disappointing 5th Circuit decision saying, “As this case drags on, wasting more time and government resources, I still hold firm to the faith that this will end justly with the full implementation of expanded DACA and DAPA.”
AILA Doc. No. 15111061

AILA Welcomes Benjamin Johnson as New Executive Director

10/29/2015
The American Immigration Lawyers Association announced today that Benjamin Johnson will serve as AILA’s new executive director beginning January 11, 2016.
AILA Doc. No. 15102930

Government Continues Incarcerating Mothers and Children Despite Judge’s Ruling

10/23/2015
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project calls on the government to fully comply with Judge Gee’s ruling concerning the inhumane incarceration of mothers and children fleeing violence and persecution; thus far DHS has not taken the steps necessary to comply with today’s deadline.
AILA Doc. No. 15102333

Fact Sheet: The Flores Litigation and the Impact on Family Detention

10/23/2015
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project offers this fact sheet on the Flores litigation, covering the key points from Judge Gee’s ruling concerning the inhumane incarceration of mothers and children fleeing violence and persecution, and what the next steps are in the case.
AILA Doc. No. 15102332

CRCL Complaint Details How Family Detention Facility Endangers Incarcerated Mothers and Children

10/6/2015
A complaint was submitted to the DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and the Office of Inspector General by the CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project detailing additional examples of deplorable and inadequate medical care to which mothers and children are subjected.
AILA Doc. No. 15100605

Coercion and Intimidation of Detained Mothers and Children

9/30/2015
A complaint was submitted to the DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and the Office of Inspector General by the CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project documenting intimidation, misinformation and violations of the right to counsel at the family detention facility in Dilley, Texas.
AILA Doc. No. 15093004

AILA: Government Ineptitude Disappoints Thousands on Visa Timing

9/25/2015
AILA and its members were disappointed today to learn that, due to a gross government miscalculation, many individuals and families will continue to face lengthy waits before they can submit their applications for permanent residence.
AILA Doc. No. 15092531

Obama Administration Again Hands Families Over to Private Prison Company

9/18/2015
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project responded to the news that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had awarded a private prison company the grant to establish a new case management alternative to detention initiative for families.
AILA Doc. No. 15091830

Thousands Will Receive Help from AILA Members to Apply for Citizenship

9/15/2015
AILA is proud to partner with the NALEO Educational Fund for the ninth annual Citizenship Day on Saturday, September 19, 2015; the event brings together AILA attorneys and other advocates to provide assistance to lawful permanent residents eligible for naturalization.
AILA Doc. No. 15091512

AILA: America Must Respond More Generously to Refugee Crisis

9/11/2015
AILA urges President Obama to go beyond the commitment he made to resettle 10,000 Syrian refugees and to extend more meaningful protection to all refugees and asylum seekers whether they are resettled from abroad or have crossed U.S. borders fleeing violence, persecution, and other horrors.
AILA Doc. No. 15091100

Five Incarcerated Refugee Families Finally Released After Being Held for Months on End

9/10/2015
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project responded to Friday’s release of five families who had been subjected to many months of incarceration despite repeated efforts to advocate for their release pending the adjudication of their claims for protection in the United States.
AILA Doc. No. 15091030

Court Orders Prompt Release of Immigrant Children from Family Detention

8/24/2015
AILA and the American Immigration Council welcome a decision by U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee in Flores v. Lynch, which ruled that children should generally be released from detention within five days—preferably to a parent, including a parent with whom they were apprehended.
AILA Doc. No. 15082430

AILA Bids Farewell to Executive Director Crystal Williams

8/13/2015
After nearly six years as Executive Director, AILA bids farewell to Crystal Williams. AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis noted, “Her years of dedication, not only to the field of immigration law but to the success and impact of the association, are an example to us all.”
AILA Doc. No. 15081368

DOJ’S Shameful Attempt to Pretty Up Family Detention Comes Up Woefully Short

8/7/2015
The American Immigration Lawyers Association and the American Immigration Council are outraged by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) response to U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee’s ruling on the mass incarceration of children and mothers seeking asylum in the U.S.
AILA Doc. No. 15080703

AILA Opposes the “Stop Sanctuary Cities Act” (S. 1814)

8/5/2015
AILA urges Senators to oppose the “Stop Sanctuary Cities Act,” (S. 1814) and cancel markup of the bill in the Senate Judiciary Committee scheduled for Thursday, August 6, 2015. AILA President Victor Nieblas condemned the bill “which forces local compliance with these illegal detainer requests.”
AILA Doc. No. 15080560

Deplorable Medical Treatment at Family Detention Centers

7/30/2015
A complaint was submitted to the DHS Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties and the Office of Inspector General on behalf of ten detained mothers by the American Immigration Council, AILA, CLINIC, Immigrant Justice Corps, RAICES, and the Women’s Refugee Commission.
AILA Doc. No. 15073001

AILA Releases Seventh Edition of Asylum Primer

7/28/2015
AILA is proud to release the seventh edition of AILA's Asylum Primer, the comprehensive, practical guide to U.S. asylum law and procedure that has been completely updated and expanded to address changes since the release of the last edition in 2009.
AILA Doc. No. 15072800

Incarcerated Children and Mothers Denied Due Process and Critical Information Before Release

7/27/2015
The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project called Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to account for the cascade of due process violations and detrimental practices at the South Texas Family Residential Center in Dilley, Texas, and at the Karnes County Residential Center in Karnes City, Texas.
AILA Doc. No. 15072761

Judge Stands Up for Refugee Families, Castigates Government for Policies that Traumatize Children

7/25/2015
The American Immigration Lawyers Association and the American Immigration Council welcomed a ruling in Flores v. Johnson by U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee that should signal the end of the mass incarceration of children and mothers seeking asylum in the U.S.
AILA Doc. No. 15072501

Release of Refugee Families is Long-Overdue Step

7/13/2015
The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) and the American Immigration Council welcome plans announced by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for the release of some mothers and children detained after seeking refuge at our borders with the following statement.
AILA Doc. No. 15071360

Vaccine Overdose of Detained Children Another Sign that Family Detention Must End

7/4/2015
On July 4, 2015, AILA and AIC learned that, recently, medical personnel at the detention center in Dilley, Texas that holds nearly 2,000 children and their mothers mistakenly gave adult-strength Hepatitis A vaccinations to approximately 250 children.
AILA Doc. No. 15070460

AILA Releases New Edition of Treatise on Immigration and Crimes

6/30/2015
AILA is proud to release the sixth edition of Immigration Consequences of Criminal Activity: A Guide to Representing Foreign-Born Defendants authored by criminal immigration law expert Mary E. Kramer.
AILA Doc. No. 15063005

Traumatizing Impact of Family Detention on Mental Health of Children and Mothers

6/30/2015
The psychological harm caused when mothers and children seeking asylum in the U.S. are detained in jail-like facilities is the subject of a complaint filed with CRCL by AILA, the Women’s Refugee Commission, and the American Immigration Council.
AILA Doc. No. 15062534

AILA Commends Government for Temporary Relief to Nepalese Nationals

6/24/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis applauded the government for designating Nepal for Temporary Protected Status (TPS), thanking “DHS for recognizing that the conditions in Nepal remain unsafe after the major earthquake shook the country weeks ago.”
AILA Doc. No. 15062443

AILA: DHS Plans on Family Detention Are a Step Forward

6/24/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis welcomed newly announced DHS plans relating to family detention but said, “more is needed…Asylum seeking families should be given due process, not expedited removal. And the end of the road must be the end of family detention entirely.”
AILA Doc. No. 15062439

AILA: ICE Statement on Family Detention Ignores the Tragic Reality

6/23/2015
AILA President Victor Nieblas Pradis responded to a recent statement on family detention from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) saying "In all my 19 years of experience as an immigration attorney, I have never heard a federal agency rewrite history to this extent."
AILA Doc. No. 15062332

AILA Elects New Officers; Victor D. Nieblas Pradis to Serve as President of Association

6/18/2015
AILA today elected new officers to its Executive Committee for the 2015-2016 term during AILA’s Annual Conference in National Harbor, MD. Victor D. Nieblas Pradis was installed as AILA’s President.
AILA Doc. No. 15061860

AILA Presents Trina Realmuto with the 2015 Jack Wasserman Memorial Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Trina Realmuto, of the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, with the 2015 Jack Wasserman Memorial Award for excellence in litigation in the field of immigration law.
AILA Doc. No. 15062000

AILA Recognizes Liam Schwartz with the 2015 Sam Williamson Mentor Award

6/20/2015
AILA will recognize Liam Schwartz, of Liam Schwartz & Associates, Ramat Gan, Israel, with the 2015 Sam Williamson Mentor Award in acknowledgment of his outstanding efforts and excellent counsel to immigration attorneys by providing mentoring assistance.
AILA Doc. No. 15062090

AILA Presents Eleanor Pelta with the 2015 Susan D. Quarles AILA Service Excellence Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Eleanor Pelta of Washington, D.C., with the 2015 Susan D. Quarles AILA Service Excellence Award in recognition of her outstanding service, over a period of years, in advancing the mission, development, and value of AILA for its members and the public it serves.
AILA Doc. No. 15062091

AILA Presents Michelle N. Mendez with the 2015 Joseph Minsky Young Lawyer Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Michelle N. Mendez, of Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc, Baltimore, MD, with the 2015 Joseph Minsky Young Lawyer Award for her outstanding contributions in the field of immigration and nationality law.
AILA Doc. No. 15062092

AILA Presents Bloomberg View’s Francis Wilkinson with the 2015 Media Leadership Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Francis Wilkinson, an editor with Bloomberg View, with the 2015 Media Leadership Award in recognition of the individual whose efforts in the media most accurately depict immigration and immigrants.
AILA Doc. No. 15062093

AILA Presents the Artesia Pro Bono Volunteers with the 2015 Michael Maggio Memorial Pro Bono Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award the Artesia Pro Bono Volunteers with the 2015 Michael Maggio Memorial Pro Bono Award for outstanding efforts in providing pro bono representation in the immigration field.
AILA Doc. No. 15062094

AILA Presents Mary E. Kramer with the 2015 Edith Lowenstein Memorial Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Mary E. Kramer, Miami, FL, with the 2015 Edith Lowenstein Memorial Award for excellence in advancing the practice of immigration law.
AILA Doc. No. 15062095

AILA Presents Deborah Anker and the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program with the 2015 Arthur C. Helton Memorial Human Rights Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Deborah Anker and the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program (HIRC) with the 2015 Arthur C. Helton Memorial Human Rights Award for outstanding service in advancing the cause of human rights.
AILA Doc. No. 15062096

AILA Presents Laura Lichter and Stephen Manning with the Founders Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Laura Lichter, of Lichter Immigration, Denver, CO, and Stephen Manning, of Immigrant Law Group, PC, Portland, OR, with the Founders Award, which is given from time to time to the person or entity having the most substantial impact on the field of immigration law or policy.
AILA Doc. No. 15062097

AILA Presents Lisa Graybill with the 2015 Elmer Fried Excellence in Teaching Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Lisa Graybill, of the Sturm College of Law, Denver, CO, with the 2015 Elmer Fried Excellence in Teaching Award for outstanding professor in the area of immigration law.
AILA Doc. No. 15062098

National Harbor to Welcome Immigration Lawyers June 17-20

6/15/2015
AILA will host its 2015 Annual Conference beginning Wednesday June 17 in National Harbor, MD. The conference will bring approximately 3,000 attorneys from around the globe to the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center.
AILA Doc. No. 15061508

U.S. Supreme Court’s Kerry v. Din Ruling Denies Justice to American Families Seeking Accountability for Visa Decisions

6/15/2015
In this joint press release with NIJC and NIPNLG, AILA’s Executive Director Crystal Williams noted, “that just because the Court says that the government can deny without explanation doesn’t mean that it must. The State Department can still decide to do the right thing."
AILA Doc. No. 15061507

AILA: DC-Area Immigrants Will Receive Free Legal Consultations from Immigration Attorneys

6/15/2015
On June 20, AILA and its partners will offer free immigration law services in Washington, D.C. at AILA’s fifth annual Pro Bono Clinic; dozens of immigration attorneys will be available to answer questions and assess each participant’s situation as it relates to immigration.
AILA Doc. No. 15061505

AILA Presents Angela Adams with the 2015 Advocacy Award

6/20/2015
AILA will award Angela Adams, Associate General Counsel, Indiana University, with the 2015 Advocacy Award for outstanding efforts in support of AILA’s legislative agenda.
AILA Doc. No. 15062099

AILA: Need to End Family Detention Ever More Clear

6/12/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman responded to news that some kids and moms are being released from detention, noting that “The tragic reality is that more than 2,000 children and mothers remain detained…Freedom for a few, while the nightmare continues for everyone else detained, is not sufficient.”
AILA Doc. No. 15061207

AILA: 33 Senators Call for an End to Family Detention

6/2/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman commended 33 senators for their forceful call to end family detention, saying “Nearly three-quarters of the Members of Congress from the President’s own party have now called on the Administration to end this shameful practice. Isn’t it time for him to listen?”
AILA Doc. No. 15060203

AILA Applauds 136 House Members Standing Up for America’s Values

5/27/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman applauded the 136 House members who joined together calling for an end to family detention saying “Calling out the Administration is not done lightly, but it is vital that the federal government understand that continuing this practice is immoral and inhumane.”
AILA Doc. No. 15052704

AILA: 5th Circuit Decision Disappointing But Not Surprising

5/26/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman responded to today’s decision by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, saying: “It appeared early on that this particular panel of this particular court was unlikely to grant the stay. Thankfully though, this is far from the last word on the matter.”
AILA Doc. No. 15052676

AILA Releases New Edition of Immigration Law and the Military

5/26/2015
AILA released the second edition of Immigration Law & the Military, written by Margaret Stock, which covers a multitude of common military-related issues through real case examples and provides information on special resources available to military personnel and their family members.
AILA Doc. No. 15052663

AILA: Little Meaningful Change in ICE Announcement on Family Detention

5/14/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman responded to the announcement of plans by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for “enhanced oversight for family residential centers” saying the plans do “almost nothing to address the fundamental issue that there is no humane way to detain families.”
AILA Doc. No. 15051462

AILA Releases New Edition of INA and CFR

4/30/2015
AILA announced the release of the 2015 editions of the Immigration & Nationality Act (INA) and the Immigration Regulations (CFR) with AILA President Leslie Holman noting, “I can’t imagine an immigration law office without both of these references.”
AILA Doc. No. 15043016

AILA: Really? Birthright Citizenship Is the ‘Immigration’ Issue Congress Wants to Take Up?

4/28/2015
AILA Executive Director Crystal Williams commented on the House Judiciary Committee’s scheduled hearing on Birthright Citizenship, noting that the 14th Amendment’s purpose was “to put citizenship above the politics and prejudices of any given era.”
AILA Doc. No. 15042799

AILA: Deluge of H-1B Applications Exposes Artificial Limit as Roadblock to Economic Growth from Outdated System

4/7/2015
Leslie Holman, AILA President, responded to the news that the H-1B cap for FY2016 was reached and exceeded and a lottery will be held, saying “once again, our country’s outdated and inefficient immigration laws are blocking economic gains and business growth.”
AILA Doc. No. 15004070

Immigrants’ Rights Groups Announce Plans to Provide Pro Bono Legal Services to Children and Their Mothers Detained in Texas

3/31/2015
AILA joins CLINIC, the American Immigration Council, and RAICES in a new collective project known as CARA to provide legal services to children and their mothers detained in Karnes City and Dilley, Texas, and to advocate for the end of family detention.
AILA Doc. No. 15033165

AILA: An Agent of Change Paying the Price?

3/25/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman commented on the report detailing employee complaints about management of the USCIS EB-5 program noting that “While giving voice to resentments and frustrations by some…the report cites no laws or even policies that were violated.”
AILA Doc. No. 15032550

AILA: Welcome Changes to Business Visas but Implementation Means Everything

3/25/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman welcomed the draft of the long-awaited policy memo on the L-1B visa category and “the Administration’s recognition that a lack of consistency has been an obstacle to this program’s success.”
AILA Doc. No. 15032502

AILA: Hearing Should Focus on Important Workforce Needs

3/16/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman advocated for H-1B visas in advance of tomorrow’s Senate hearing on “Immigration Reforms Needed to Protect Skilled American Workers” which AILA “hopes will examine our nation’s legitimate skilled-worker needs in a balanced and thoughtful way.”
AILA Doc. No. 15031664

AILA: Judicial Victory for Detained Asylum Seekers

2/20/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman welcomed the decision by federal judge James Boasberg who “took a huge step in protecting Central American mothers and children who have made out strong claims for asylum in preliminary hearings with federal asylum officers.”
AILA Doc. No. 15022068

AILA: Texas Judge Made the Wrong Call; Executive Action will be Upheld and Implemented

2/17/2015
AILA President Leslie A. Holman responded to the decision by Texas federal judge Andrew Hanen to temporarily halt President Obama’s Deferred Action for Parents of Citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and the expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative.
AILA Doc. No. 15021763

America’s Economy Needs Real Solutions, Not the Legal Workforce Act

2/4/2015
In this press release, AILA recommends Congress reject the “Legal Workforce Act” being considered today by the House Judiciary Committee’s Immigration Subcommittee, calling it an “unworkable bill which would do more harm than good to our nation’s economy.”
AILA Doc. No. 15020460

AILA: Immigration Innovation Act Would Help Economy

1/14/2015
AILA President Leslie Holman lauded the introduction of the Immigration Innovation (“I-Squared” Act) saying, “I’m encouraged that this bipartisan group of Senators recognizes what so many economists and business leaders do as well: that welcoming innovative thinkers is key to economic prosperity.”
AILA Doc. No. 15011443